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Crossing Michigan

Friday, July 4, 2014

Once again my route plans have been changed, as I find different ways to cross both Canada and the States. My original idea of going to Sault Ste. Marie has been scrapped because I want to visit Chicago, and doing so on my way back from St. John’s disrupts far too much of my future plans, which will now include taking in the awesome Blue Ridge Parkway. So I’ve headed south and I’m now only about a week away from Chicago.

Here’s a brief look at my route:  Marquette to Chicago  though I will be following cycle paths for a while from Cedarburg.

My last blog covered Duluth and then onto Marquette, but along the way I stopped off in Ironwood where I met another touring cyclist staying with the same hosts. It was a bit unusual, because these particular hosts were not even there, their faith in the cycling community has led them to throw open their house to us travellers and it takes “the kindness of strangers” to a whole new level.

Arthur, my fellow guest in Ironwood

The ride from Ironwood to Marquette was hard, as once again I battled headwinds and my overnight camps were pretty wet affairs. I was pleased to see the sun come out when I arrived at my new hosts and this lifted my spirits tremendously, but then so did being part of another clan gathering. Jess and Jason had other visitors staying, including Curtiss, a friend from Alaska who was playing at the local brewery later that evening. I was invited to go along and had a great night out as Curtiss is a very talented musician, deserving of a much wider audience. Check him out for yourselves at:

I enjoyed my time in Marquette and it was a chance to finally see more of Lake Superior without the cold and dense fog as we all headed down to the beach, where a fun time was had by all.

The beach in Marquette

Beach frisbee proved very popular, but there was no way I was going in the water – it was freezing!

Chris and Curtiss enjoying the (cold) water

Whereas Jess had the common sense to stay out!

Jess stays dry

And Jason got baby duty…

Jason, looking like he needs more sun!

Jess and Jason took me around some of the sights, including a hilltop view of the city and Marquette’s claimed largest wooden dome in the world. It was a nice relaxed rest period with good food, good company and good weather, which made a pleasant change. Here’s a selection of the other pictures I took:

The Coastguard station, Marquette

Hilltop view of Marquette

The largest wooden dome in the world

Another of Marquette’s claims to fame is it has one of the few remaining Iron Ore Dock’s in the world. Michigan was the largest producer of iron ore in the United States way back in the 1890’s and the dock is still in use today.

The Iron Ore Dock in Marquette

Too soon it was time to leave and as I mentioned at the start of this blog, I had made the decision to head south. My attempts at trying to arrange other Warmshower hosts proved unsuccessful, that is until I reached Cedarburg, my current location. It was a tough time with only the final day finding me riding with the wind behind, while in between there was far too much rain. The summer must surely arrive soon?

Anyway that journey’s for another blog, so more soon…

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