TravelingMorgansBlog Working our way around the contiguous 48 states in our RV.

29. September 2012

Greetings from Painted Rocks National Lakeshore on Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Filed under: 2012 — admin @ 05:41

Lake Superior is the largest freshwater lake in the world by its surface area, and third largest by volume of water, with

more water than the other 4 great lakes combined, with enough water to cover the whole 48 contiguos states 5 feet deep in

fresh water.  Neither Texas nor Alaska has anything to compare.

One of its marvels is the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. To truly appreciate this marvel, you must go by boat. It is

easy to see how this area was named for the stains caused by various minerals in the water. There are also some unique

geographic formations. We have Chapel Rock, Lovers Leap, Grand Portal and Miners Castle, along with a sample of Pictured

Rocks and 60 foot high Spray Falls.

We will be heading south through Wisconsin (perhaps stopping at the Door Peninsula) into Illinois (perhaps including the

Mississippi Palisades) in the next few days.

Chapel RockPainted RocksSpray FallsMiners CastleGrand PortalLovers Leap

22. September 2012

Greeting from America’s original North Coast, the Straits of Mackinac

Filed under: 2012 — admin @ 09:42

Michigan has an unusual designation. There is more shoreline on navigable water than any of the other contiguous states. With three great lakes bordering the state, how could it not be otherwise. The coastline of Michigan is fresh water, but there is more coastline on navigable water (3,288 miles) than Texas (367 miles) or California (840 miles) or even Florida (1,197 miles ).

The Straits of Mackinac were so important during the Revolutionary War, that the fort was moved from Michlimacinac at the present site of Mackinaw City on the tip of the Michigans’s lower peninsula to Mackinac Island as being safer from attack by colonials. This decision was apparently made after the fall of Fort Vincennes. It was not long after the fort was moved than it became property of the new American Republic by treaty. The highly profitable fur trade was centered on this “North Coast” of the United States for many more years. Today there is a bridge connection the Upper Peninsula with the rest of Michigan (
This bridge was opened in 1957. Before that the only ways to travel from the main part of Michigan to the Upper Peninsula was via ferry or traveling clear around Lake Michigan.

Considering the Traveling Morgans lived in Indiana for 30 years and Larry grew up near Lake Michigan, it is perhaps strange that this was our first trip to the junction of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. It has been a good trip.

Sleeping Bear Dunes
( was voted by viewers of Good Morning America as the most beautiful place in America. It is beautiful, but we would rank it a bit lower. Larry’s old stomping grounds of the Indiana Dunes has more impressive dunes (and arguably more beautiful) as does Jockey Ridge in North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The “bear” is a wonder, and the islands and bays add a very scenic touch, but I am afraid most people who voted have never been toYellowstone Lake or Lake Tahoe or Bryce Canyon or any of many other beautiful places in the 48 contiguos states.

We took a short run to see Lake Superior where it empties into the St. Mary’s River (, which in turn goes to Lake Huron, and watch ships on it that had come through the Soo (or Sault) locks. The St. Mary’s River may have more tonnage shipped than any other short section of river in the world.

We plan now to go to Munising on Lake Superior and see Picture Rocks National Lakeshore. From there we will complete our trip on the “North Coast” at the Door Peninsula of Wisconsin, and go on to the Mississippi Palisades, then Indianapolis.

This is our first trip in a long time that was not going from one job to another. Phyllis has not yet recovered from her falls, and work is out of the question right now. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Winter will mean staying in Indianapolis for the birth of our first grandchild. Our first winter in the north since we hit the road in 2004.

For both of you who are interested in, the TEXAS section is being revised and now has 19 pages. The first 3 are finished:

The fourth is nearing completion:

The rest will follow soon. They are up, but listed as under construction, and some are quite rough.

FOOTNOTE: Alaska has 6,640 miles of coastline on navigable water if you count the Arctic Ocean as navigable.

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