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Category Archives: Michigan

We spent some time driving around Seney National Wildlife Refuge on our last trip to the U.P. It doesn’t have the best wildlife but it is a beautiful fall photography location. It was created during the depression when no one else wanted the land. It now has a variety of wildlife including a large number of Trumpeter Swans.

More photos from Seney National Wildlife Refuge can be found on my website.

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One of our favorite places to photograph fall colors in Hiawatha National Forest just south of Munising, Michigan. We have a route that we drive that passes a number of beautiful lakes. Sometimes the route changes a bit depending upon the number of photographers we find at any given lake. This area is a favorite destination for photography workshops so you can expect to find large groups of photographers a some locations.

More photos from Hiawatha National Forest can be found on my website.

Our first stop is usually Pete’s Lake.

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From Pete’s Lake we drive back toward Munising stopping at Moccasin Lake. There is a pull off right along highway 13. This is also a trail head for Bruno’s Run Trail which loops past a number of these lakes.

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moccasin-lake-hiawatha-national-forest-16-10-3456After photographing at Moccasin Lake we continued back toward Munising stopping at Thornton Lake. The turnoff for Thornton Lake is not well marked and difficult to spot if there are a lot of leaves on the trees. On this visit it was standing room only because a photography group was just packing up to leave.

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thornton-lake-hiawatha-national-forest-16-10-3626Continuing on toward Munising we turn off on Buckhorn Road and connect to Doe Lake Road. Just after turning on to Buckhorn Road you will encounter Twin Lakes.

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reflections-big-twin-lake-hiawatha-national-forest-16-10-3643We then drove on to Doe Lake ending our fall tour of Hiawatha National Forest lakes.

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After spending the morning driving around Hiawatha National Forest we decided to spend the afternoon waterfalling. Our first stop was Au Train Falls. We had actually visited this falls a few weeks earlier but thought is was worth another visit because of the variety of waterfall photography opportunities.

Au Train Falls consists of a number of waterfalls. This is the main falls photographed from near the power station.

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On this visit we walked down the river below the bridge to photograph the fall colors.

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au-train-falls-16-10-3869In addition to the main falls there numerous smaller falls that are produced by springs that flow out of the hills above the river. These were taken from a spring just below the main parking lot.

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More photos from Au Train Falls can be found on my website.

It’s been five years since I first visited Rock River Falls. At that time there were no signs to the falls and the parking lot was a wide spot on a one track road. I would have missed the falls it it wasn’t for another photographer who was parked along the road. Things have changed. There is now signage along the road and a nice parking lot. It appears that some of the states are realizing that waterfalling is a growing and popular sport and they are making more of an effort to provide directions and parking to these attractions.

I hadn’t been back to the falls because of the terrible road. At the time I first found it I was alone and driving my Subaru.  On subsequent trips my wife was along and we were driving a van. I didn’t think the van would be able to get down the road but the improved directions and roads made it possible.

More photos from Rock River Falls can be found on my website.

rock-river-falls-16-10-3923There was quite a bit of water flowing over the falls. The hike in was exciting because of the muddy trail. We met a number of people that were attempting it with tennis shoes on. My wife and I always wear our Muck Boots when hiking to waterfalls and they really came in handy on this hike. Rock Falls is not all that large so after photographing the falls I spent some time taking intimate photos of the area surrounding the falls.

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rock-river-falls-16-10-4022On our way out we managed a few photos. In-spite of the narrow road it was a beautiful drive through the forest.

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After a long day of photographing waterfalls and driving through Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore we decided to drive through Sunset Seney National Wildlife Refuge just as the sun was starting to set. It was cloudy out and I didn’t expect much of a sunset but as it turned out it was spectacular.

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After leaving Mosquito Beach it was a long hike back to the car. The only thing to break it up was a series of waterfalls along the Mosquito River.

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More photos from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore can be found on my website.

You know when you reach Chapel Beach because you see Chapel Rock at the end of the trail.

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We walked down to the beach to photograph a waterfall that flows into Lake Superior. Several years ago we were on the Beach when a strong storm hit. My wife had put here pack down on a sandbar and the sudden storm created strong waves that almost washed out into the lake. On this day things were quiet.

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I spend a little time photographing objects along the beach including some footprints that I hopped was a large dog.

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We took one last look at the Beach before heading out on the Lakeshore Trail to the Mosquito River.

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More photos from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore can be found on my website.

Leaving Chapel Beach we headed out on the Lakeshore Trail for the Mosquito River.

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chapel-beach-to-mosquito-river-pictured-rocks-national-lakeshore-16-10-3060I managed to photograph a few small objects along the way including some Hoof Mushrooms.

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leaf-on-lichens-chapel-beach-to-mosquito-river-pictured-rocks-national-lakeshore-16-10-3183After, what seemed like a long hike, we reached Mosquito Beach.

mosquito-falls-pictured-rocks-national-lakeshore-mosquito-beach-pictured-rocks-national-lakeshore-16-10-3210We grabbed a snack before it started to rain and then hiked over to the mouth of the Mosquito River.

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More photos from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore can be found on my website.

When we are in the Pictured Rocks we generally like to hike a loop trail that starts from the Chapel Beach Trail head, Connects with the Lakeshore Trail and then return to the trail head via Mosquito Falls Trail. Our first stop on the trail is usually Chapel Falls. This is an impressive falls with opportunities for intimate photographs of parts of the falls.

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One thing we saw a lot of on our three trips to the U.P. of Michigan were mushrooms. The very wet summer and fall proved to be an excellent year for them.

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There was not a lot of color along the trail. Fall colors were unusually late this year. This area is spectacular in the spring when the flowers are out.

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More photos from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore can be found on my website.

On the way back toward Ironwood we decided to see if we could find Sunday Lake Falls. This is one I had never heard of but it was listed in Phil Stagg’s book Waterfalls of Michigan. Turns out it was also on Planter Creek and just across Highway 28 from Root Beer Falls. There is no parking lot so we pulled off of the road next to Planter Creek. There is also no trail so we just worked our way along the creek. I didn’t really expect much because the book showed that it wasn’t much of a waterfall just a rapids. As it turned out this was one of the more photogenic falls we photographed during our fall trips. It had started raining as we walked into the falls, providing some ideal conditions for photographing waterfalls.

The water comes comes out of an old mine shaft that was blasted into the hills and apparently drains Sunday Lake in Wakefield.

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What really made the visit was the fall leaves and rocks that provide an unlimited number of intimate photographs of the creek.

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