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1-2-3 Day Itineraries
There is so much to see and do in this beautiful wilderness. There are several options listed below and be sure to stop by the front desk for a map that will help you plan your day!
Looking for a great place to each when visiting the area? Look no further than AJ’s Oven for the best pizza & best food in the UP!
Heading toward Wakefield, Bessemer and Ironwood:
Head West on M28 out of AJ’s and in about 18 miles you will come to the City of Wakefield where you will be greeted by Sunday Lake. (Note: Before you get to Wakefield you will see 519N which will take you to Presque Isle Falls and the back way to the Porcupine Mountains). If you follow highway 2 west into Bessemer, you’ll want to make a right at Big Powderhorn Mountain which will take you to the Black River Harbor Bypass (one of the Top 10 Road Trips in the Country as voted by Road Trip Magazine). Your field trip should include some or all of the following:
- SUNDAY LAKE: One block north of M-28 on the US 2 intersection in Wakefield, MI. Sunday Lake offers Eddy Park, a nice park with a pavilion, swimming, picnic tables, a playground, camping, fishing and boating. You’ll see many folks enjoying a walk around the lake, and it’s a beautiful spot to watch a sunset, too. While in Wakefield, check out the Northwoods Candle Shop and Nannette Knits for some great local gifts! On Sunday Lake yo will find a great walking/biking path that will take you on a 3 mile trek around the lake.
- Black River Harbor:Scenic Bypass:
Quietly cruise along the Black River Harbor Scenic Byway to the Ottawa National Forest’s spectacular signature site – The Black River Harbor. Scenic hiking trails through an old growth hemlock and hardwood forest and five waterfalls make this a favorite scenic stop along Lake Superior.
There are five different falls that you can visit: Rainbow, Sandstone, Potawatomi, Conglomerate, or Gorge – which will be your favorite waterfall?
- Copper Peak Adventure Ride
Copper Peak Adventure Ride is the only ski flying hill west of the Prime Meridian. Ride a 36-story chair-lift to a destination far above the trees. For the more adventurous soul, ascend the additional 18-stories to a panoramic view that will engrain 2,500 square miles known as The Wilds of Michigan into your mind for now and forever. This ski jump is scheduled to reopen next year.
- Presque Isle State Park
Stroll alongside Presque Isle River and discover the numerous waterfalls flowing through ancient hemlocks. Stop at the swinging bridge at the mouth to watch Presque Isle River flow into Lake Superior. To access the falls hikers have the option of parking at the day-use parking area or the Presque Isle River camp site at the southern point of the South Boundary Road. Then follow the West or East trail on either side of the river for a stunning day in the wilderness!
Silver City, Porcupine Mountains and Lake of The Clouds
- Leaving the Lodge and heading east on M-28, head North on M64 toward Lake Superior and Silver City. On the way, you will pass the North Country Trail, which is the longest National Scenic Trail in the United States stretching from New York to North Dakota, linking seven states and 10 National Forests.
- Bonanza Falls: between White Pine and Silver City, one mile south of Lake Superior, on the West side of M-64. (no sign viewable when you are heading north – need to look for Michigan recreation signage ). Beautiful views, great easy hiking!
- Silver City: turn left into Silver City and stop along the way to enjoy the shores of Lake Superior. Walk the beach, do some rock hounding and capture the amazing views!
- Porcupine Mountains – Summit Peak, Lake of the Clouds and Mirror Lake
Spend the early afternoon discovering the wilderness of Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park. Begin with a hike to the highest point of the Porcupine Mountains, Summit Peak, reaching an impressive 1,958 feet! Viewed from an easily accessible scenic overlook lays Lake of the Clouds. A sight to behold, this lake is surrounded by historical old-growth forests, abundant wildlife and natural beauty. Bring binoculars, a camera, and a keen sight for a chance to embrace a soaring eagle! Don’t forget to check out Mirror Lake while you are there!
- Cascade Falls: The Cascade Hiking Trail is a short scenic trail. Head out of the Lodge east on M-28 about 2-3 miles and turn left onto Forest Road 400. Go North for 7 miles and you will come to a parking area. The trail consists of two routes to the Falls. The Bluff route is the more difficult route, but by far more scenic. Each trail is approximately 1 mile and will lead you to the picturesque Cascade Falls
- Bond Falls
100′ of craggy rock surrounded by an easily accessible trail brings you up close and personal to The Wilds of Michigan most glorious waterfall. The altitudinous 50′ of rushing water will rekindle your senses. See its majesty, listen to falls cascade into the Ontonagon River, smell the fresh air.
- The Sylvania Wilderness
Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy the solitude of a wilderness experience. Few Wilderness compare to Sylvania with its old growth forest and pristine lakes. Here you will find 34 named lakes – some with sandy beaches, others surrounded by record-sized pines. Spend the afternoon exploring Sylvania and you might just see a rare orchid, a bald eagles, loons and osprey.
- O-Kun-De-Kun Falls: Head west on M-28 to Bruce Crossing and go North on M-45 about 8 miles and there will be a sign for the falls on the right. This waterfall is an absolute delight for hikers. As you pass through tall pine forest and undercut ledges, it allows hikers to go under the ledge and look out from behind the water. Just below the falls is a suspension footbridge that leads the trail across Baltimore River where you get a spectacular view of the falls.
- Agate Falls: 6.5 miles east of Bruce Crossing on M-28, there is a roadside Park (Joseph F. Oravec) just past the bridge on the Ontonagon River.
- OLD VICTORIA COPPER MINE: A JOURNEY TO THE PAST: A relic of the copper-mining days is the town of Victoria, built near the original site of the site of the famous Ontonagon Boulder. Like so many communities, Victoria lost its spark of life when the copper industry abandoned the area. But unlike other small, almost forgotten mining towns, Victoria is being brought back to life by a large restoration project aimed at recreating the mid-1800’s community as it was in its peak. Old Victoria as it is called, is already open to the public, and when you walk across its green lawns, past blooming lilacs, the past has never been so near. The Old Victoria Restoration is located four miles west of Rockland, Michigan in Ontonagon County The road is clearly marked off US-45.
- Adventure Mine Tours – Rockland: Experience tours as authentic as you’ll ever find. No fancy lights or modern marvels here, just real mining the way it really was! All guests are furnished with a hard hat and headlamp. There are no other lights underground, period.
Lake Gogebic Area Attractions:
- Get out on the water: At AJ’s you can rent a pontoon, jet ski, fishing boat or kayak and check out the largest lake in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula up close and personal. Lake Gogebic is 18 miles long and It is known for its walleye, smallmouth bass, northern pike, jumbo perch, and pan fish. Depending on the season, wind conditions, and water temperatures, different fishing methods and locations can be used. Spring is a good time to fish for spawning walleye along the rocky shoreline with a jig and minnow. From mid-May to mid-June, jig fishing for walleyes is usually effective. The lake also offers opportunities for water sports, camping, sightseeing, hiking, and hunting. There is a sandy beach out on the point off of AJ’s and a nice beach area can be found at the Bergland Township park or over at the Ontonagon County Park.
- Allegator Eye: The face of this rock looks like the alligator’s eye, giving the hill its name. Part of the Ottawa National Forest. On M-64 about two miles south of Lake Gogebic State Park and about 6 miles north of U.S. 2. Look for a parking area, big enough for busses, on the road away from the lake. Handicap-accessible: This is a great hike and the view at the top is amazing – be sure to bring your camera!
- Eagle sightings – Traveling just south of M-28 on the East Shore road you will see a nest occupied for many years by a pair of magnificent eagles. After enjoying the activity in this nest for about 40 years, it was brought down in a windstorm in 2015. There is another very large eagle nest viewable from the lake just south of what the locals call the Villa on the southeast side of the lake.
Spend a day traveling the lake just watching the beauty of nature and wildlife viewing. Seeing an eagle swooping down to the lake and capturing its food is an awesome sight. If you are very quiet you will be rewarded with an eagle sitting at the water’s edge posing for your camera