Taquamenon Falls Camping Trip

It seems like it has been AGES since I last posted.  I have been super busy working overtime, getting ready for our camping trip, taking the camping trip, unpacking from the camping trip, opening the pool, and now working more overtime.  Whew! I’m tired typing that out! 😉

Memorial Day weekend was my holiday off from work, so we planned a camping trip to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with some of hubby’s family.  We went up on Thursday, and we came back on Tuesday.  I have mixed feelings about the trip; we definitely had fun, but there were also some negatives.

We stayed at the Taquamenon Falls State Park lower falls campground.  There was electric hookup, but no water or sewer hookup.  My only previous camping trip in our camper had full hookups, so this was a learning experience for me (more about how quickly I learned later).  For this trip, we didn’t take the dogs because hubby had heard there was some issues with wolves attacking dogs in the U.P.  I didn’t want to ride in the car for 8 hours with a whining, panting dog either.  We dropped the dogs off at grandma’s on the way, and we were off.  The only snag we had on the way up was the RV refrigerator not running on propane.  We stopped at the RV dealer, thinking the tank was empty, only to find that we had to play around with something or other to get it to work (hubby I’m sure knows what the “something or other” is, but I have no clue!).  I slept almost the ENTIRE car ride!

When we got to our campsite, setup went rather smoothly.  We had a really nice site, but we didn’t use it much because we were always at one of the central family sites.

campsite collage


The only snag we had while setting up is when Scott asked me to run the hot water to prime the hot water tank.  I went in, turned on the faucet, and then I went back outside to put tablecloths on the table.  About 15-20 minutes later, I asked Scott if I could turn the water off.  He looked at me with a horrified expression; I emptied about a third of our fresh water tank, and filled our grey tank about 2/3.  Fortunately a family member had a tow-able portable holding tank they let us borrow on the second day so we didn’t have to pack everything up, empty at the sanitation station, and then unpack and set up again!



It was pretty chilly the first two days.  (We would later find out we preferred the chilly weather over the warm or wet weather)  The lower falls were a short bike ride from the campsite.  We could actually hear them at our campsite, that is how close we were.



lower falls collage



Day 2 we went to Crisp Point to see Lake Superior and the lighthouse.  The drive seemed to take forever!  To get there, we had to take a county road that turned into a sandy road.  It was so narrow it was almost a two-track.  I fortunately slept on that car ride too, or I am sure I would have been extremely car sick from all of the curves!  Savannah was super cranky once we got to the point, so it wasn’t the most enjoyable visit.  A highlight for me was climbing to the top of the lighthouse.  To get up there, you had to climb a winding staircase that got narrower towards the top.  To get to the very top, you had to climb a ladder.  Before working out and losing weight, there is no way I would have climbed to the top.  It was still tiring despite being in decent shape.  I am so glad I went to the top!

Savannah & Scott climbing up the lighthouse behind me

Savannah & Scott climbing up the lighthouse behind me

crisp point collage


The third day, the weather started warming up.  We went to Oswald’s Bear Ranch in Newberry.  Here is their website: http://www.oswaldsbearranch.com/.  Savannah really enjoyed seeing all of the bears.  She can actually say “bear” now after visiting!  We took a family picture with a cub while some of her cousins fed the bear.  She wasn’t sure what to think about that!

bear ranch collage



Later that same day we went to the upper falls, where we saw some more gorgeous scenery.  To get to one of the viewing areas, there are 94 steps going down.  When we camped there in 2011, I remember going down those same steps.  On the way back up, I had to stop multiple times for a break.  This time I had to climb slowly, but I am proud to say I didn’t have to stop once on the way up!

upper falls collage



Overall, we had a good time on this camping trip.  By the third evening, the mosquitoes hatched, and they were brutal!  The fourth day we just hung around the campground.  The fifth day it rained all day long, so we hung out in campers, played games, and took a nap.  The sixth morning we pack up and headed home.  There is quite a bit to do in the Upper Peninsula, but everything is VERY spread out.  A lot of driving is required to see different places, and since we have a toddler who throws a fit when riding in the car, we were limited on the amount of time we could spend driving to different places.

taquamenon fun collage