The stone Kearsarge
We took the cutoff on Cliff Road, past the site of the Cliff Mine, first of many economically successful mines in Copper Country. Our first view of Lake Superior and our first waterfall came at Eagle River. We also picked up our first rocks here.
The rock beach at Eagle River
Eagle River falls
The day started out cloudy and cool, giving the lake a dark cast instead of that scenic blue, so we concentrated on the next waterfall, Jacob's Falls (on Jacob's Creek - Bill remembered associating it with the hymn about Jacob's ladder).
Did you know this stretch of Lake Superior coast has sand dunes? Bill didn't remember this section, but it provides good views and access to the beach.
View from the dunes
Another type of ladder - a long way down
Eagle Harbor is the Keewenaw County Seat and is notable for its lighthouse. Tours are available - for a price. We opted for photos from a view tower.
Now it's time for Brockway Mountain Drive, known for the long views it provides. On the way up the mountain's wooded side, Bill saw a black bear cross the road and disappear into the woods. Up on top, we were disappointed that no lakers were in sight, but Bill used his longest lens to capture a yacht/fishing boat running parallel to the shore.
The cloud cover remained, along with a slight haze from far-away fires, so we couldn't test whether Isle Royale could be seen from here. The clouds did add some interest to this shot of Copper Harbor.
One of the main attractions of Copper Harbor is Fort Wilkins State Historic Site. The fort, placed to protect/keep the peace during the copper boom, was active from 1842 to 1870 and was manned by a small infantry detachment. The buildings in the pictures are original, with restoration of buildings and stockades by the WPA. Two first-person interpreters did a nice job staying in character, but I tried to ask questions that would allow them to answer w/o causing them difficulty.
Private's wife waiting for some water to start the washing
Private in the 1st U .S. Infantry, ca 1870, on fatigue duty
Parade ground and post buildings
Sandra is her own character
Copper Harbor itself hasn't changed all that much - a few more motels, only a few restaurants, and minimum access to the waterfront. We noticed that most waterfront property on these natural lakes is privately owned, limiting our chances for good scenic views. Our lunch was a mediocre pasty at Tamarack Inn, so we started back toward Calumet via Lakeshore Drive and Lac la Belle.
A rock beach in a cove along Lake Shore Drive/MI-26
Haven Falls at Lac la Belle
It's 22 miles from Lac la Belle to Gay, an old mill town. The route features sand beaches, and a great place for rock picking - so we picked a bunch. Then it was on to Gay for a beer. Want proof?
118.7 miles for the day, 1144 for the trip. Tomorrow we do the laundry and do a little additional gallivanting.