Island Fascination


St. Ignace, Michigan is one area the tourist ferries depart to Mackinac Island for the day-trippers. We stayed there one night and walked the shoreline of Lake Huron and ate an amazing meal after driving through the Upper Peninsula in rain for 8 hours. 

We boarded the ferry at 8:30 am with Covid restrictions enforced. It was 55 F degrees cold crossing a choppy blue green Lake Huron. My last trip here was in 1978, so the harbor with all the ferryboats, shops and vendors was unrecognizable. Only the lack of noisy cars and presence of bicycles and horse drawn carriages was a familiar memory.

What do you notice when you revisit a place? How do childhood memories differ from the ones of your youth? 

We walked the Mackinac shoreline, photographed houses, and decided to see the Island by hiking.

Once we were safe on shore, we learned that we were on the island of Malta. The people of the island were very kind to us. It was cold and rainy, so they built a fire on the shore to welcome us. Acts 28:1-2 NIV

Going away from the Grand Hotel and downtown area, the people thinned and we climbed to Fort Mackinac. The horn announced the opening of the Fort, but we did not visit it and climbed the steep hill to the trails. 

The governor of Michigan has a summer home at the top with magnificent views of small islands dotting Lake Huron. 

We walked behind the Mackinac Fort and found the trail to the Gazebo.  This was from an old movie with Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve called “Somewhere in Time.” We took a break on the benches and enjoyed the overlook view to the bay.We took a small wood path down to houses strategically placed above the town. The style, flowers and views were breathtaking.  

The Natural Arch Rock was crawling with tourists and horse drawn carriages by 10:00 am.  

The morning was heating up as we left the herd and climbed a path to Fort Holmes, the highest point on Mackinac Island. This island was a place of fierce battles with the British at different times.  

We headed through a graveyard, noticed the number of Amish who vacation here, boys on bikes racing through the woods and joined the tourists heading toward the Grand Hotel. 

You must now pay $10 per person to visit or walk through the Grand Hotel. The rooms rent up to $1000 per night and they do not want the touristy “riffraff” to spoil the experience. The flower gardens were in full summer glory in August.  

When we descended the hill by the Grand Hotel, there were many horse carriages carrying the tourists around the island. There were protective plastic shields between each of the benches on the carriage. How do they feed all these horses living on the island? 

How do you think they feed all these horses?  Why are there so many fudge shops? 

Shops were open and full by noon on a Saturday. Countless fudge shops was interesting and unexplainable. It was a 30-minute wait for a coffee and waiting for food took longer. We had walked 17,000 steps and 7 miles on the island, so we left the for our trip south across the steeply famous Mackinac Bridge.  

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