Miles and miles of trees dressed in their ballgowns! It is the only way I can describe the fall beauty of northern lower Michigan.
Not only were we fortunate enough to see the beauty of nature in the trees, we were lucky enough to stumble upon Cherry Street Market in Kalkaska. It could be called a roadside market, but it is much more than that. With its abundance of fruit and vegetable displayed so appealing we had turn the car around and wander through it in amazement. The colors here were as vibrant as on the trees surrounding it.
As we approached Traverse City, the Bay is a real enticement. They have developed their waterfront with the tourist in mind. The harbor downtown even in an early October evening was busy with sailboats and people milling around. The many hotels, restaurants, and stores were all thriving.
The last stop on our two day journey was Sleeping Bear Dunes, voted “The Most Beautiful Place in America” by Good Morning America. Ii had never been there and I can truly say the park needs to be experienced.
There are many different ways in which you can see the park, from bicycles, to hiking, to canoing and driving. We chose to drive the loop. The $10 park fee is worth every penny to see something so unique. A place where sand dunes, forest and a Great Lake all merge to form a vista that in unforgettable.
You can stand on a lookout and see almost a straight line where the greenery of the forest ends and the starkness of the dunes emerge. The whiteness of the sand just calls you to play, even though that is so appealing there are signs warning that the dunes are constantly changing and therefore unstable. While that prevents you from building a sandcastle it does make it exciting knowing the the view is always in transition.
Even though we humans are discouraged from climbing on the dunes it does not prevent wildlife from doing so. We saw the proof. Bear paw prints next to the walkway.
*Photo Credits: Randy Heath