Monday, October 22, 2012

A Saturday Visit up North!

Well, Tom and I made it home safely from our "up north" day trip Saturday. We had a blast with our friends up there and got in A LOT of exercise too.

(NOTE:  Those of you who are Facebook friends with me have probably already seen the photos in this post. But at least here on Blogspot, I can add additional background information and comments, so please bear with me.)

The first half of the day was lightly raining and misting, which didn't bode well for our lighthouse tour, but undaunted, we took the tour anyway and really enjoyed it. The first lighthouse constructed on Tawas Point in 1852 was 3/4 of a mile inland from where the current lighthouse stands. At the time it was built, it was located on the water's edge of the Point. However, due to sand piling up and extending the Point into Lake Huron, the current lighthouse was built farther out in 1876. At that time IT was also at water's edge, but today, due to the same sand build-up, it is 1/2 mile inland from the point of this ever-lenghtening peninsula. The Coast Guard stopped using the current lighthouse to warn mariners in 1946.

The current lighthouse is located in Tawas State Park on the Tawas Point Peninsula.

The view from the top of the lighthouse on a gray, misty day. Notice how far out the water is in Lake Huron.

Our tour guide was dressed in a pirate's costume and had a stuffed parrot on her shoulder. To the right is the current lighthouse light, which runs on electricity now.

Looking up the lighthouse tower. There were 84 tiny, spiral stairs to the top!

Surrounding the lighthouse were lots of Halloween decorations including a large, spooky cemetery, costumed locals, children's games in the "big tent" and other festivities. Like us, the locals and visitors were undaunted by the light rain, and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves.

"I'll get you, my pretty! And your little dog, Toto, too!" LOL

Tom (on the right, just in case you weren't sure) having fun with a bony friend.

The second half of the day was dry and somewhat warmer and as we left East Tawas, we made our way to Oscoda where I used to live when I was a kid. It was great to see the town again and also our old house. Then we headed to Harrisville where 2 of our "river family" couples were camping in trailers at Harrisville State Park. It was a beautiful park with lots of trees and fall color still left. Our friends had secured side-by-side campsites at the end of a road right alongside Lake Huron. The park wasn't crowded, and Tom and I enjoyed walking along the beach with them, and on the way back, walking through the campground. Then we all gathered in 2 vehicles and headed inland to do some sightseeing almost an hour from the campground.

Having fun at Harrisville State Park beach on the Lake Huron shoreline.

I fell in love with this Cedar tree located on the site next to our friends' trailer. Yes, this is ONE TREE. Apparently, more and more new trees kept growing right out of the center of it until it looked like this. Really cool! All the trees you see in this shot are part of the same root system!

Our first stop as a group was at Five Channels Dam on the Ausable River. There are a total of 5 dams on the Ausable River between the cities of Gaylord and Oscoda, which is where the river empties out into Lake Huron. That afternoon, we got to see 4 of the dams, and the scenery was gorgeous (way hillier than we expected!).  Some of the dams were barely pumping any water; others had water gushing out into the river! Five Channels dam as seen below, wasn't pumping out much water at all.

Five Channels Dam

I think I'll publish what I've posted so far, and continue with additional stories and pictures from the second half of our trip later on this week. I surely don't want to overwhelm anyone with my consistently lengthy posts. (Me? Talk a lot? Why, surely you jest! LOL)

NEXT POST: the biggest tour attraction of our trip, Iargo Springs, Mother Nature's magical, peaceful, crystal-clear, water flowing wonderland. (And all you had to do was descend a measly 294 stairs to see it, and 294 stairs to get back to the top!)


  1. What a lovely jaunt! And I'm glad that the poor weather didn't deter your fun!

  2. We haven't been to any of those places since the kids were little. We have been up to Carole's place twice now and not gone there! I have a picture of me, Rich, Chris, Shauna, mom and dad standing right by the rail at that Five Channels Dam! I want to go back! Too bad you didn't have better weather!

  3. Glad to see you loving life!