Morning of the Munishing, MI, on our 3rd day (07-Jul-2021), brought with it grey clouds and uncomfortable temperature drop along with cold breeze. Not perfect day at all for ferry ride. Day had to start with hot coffee cups in our hand from local but famous coffee shop from downtown Munising before we embark on our already planned pictured rock boat ride. We had not anticipated that muddy grey start of the day was just the crude way nature wanted to showcase colors under her palette by end of the day.
Informant mind says: There are multiple ride options available while choosing the pictured rock cruise rides. Fast catamaran options could well also be fun considering the slow 40 minutes ride of the classic.
With carefully chosen summer dresses tucked under unprecedented wind cheaters, shawls and hoodies, pictured rock boat tour was still booked to the brim with most of the seat occupied by the time we reached. With cold wind buffeting our faces, we still dared to get the upper deck seats in anticipation of more pristine views of pictured rocks. And it served well.
High rock cliffs “colored” in various hues of brown, sandy yellow, orange and green attributed to mineral deposit over many years is called pictured rocks. There are pleasant patterns to it. Sometimes cove in the rock gives off beautiful vista of rainbow colors. Instead of wasting thousand words, pictures of pictured rock speaks for themselves.
Economical mind calculates: Pictured rock boat tour classic will cost $40.00 per adult. Due to inclement weather and high waves we had to cut short the tour by 15 minutes and they also refunded back 50% of the total cost.
We had long drive of about 3.5 hours in wait considering the fact that we targeted to reach Ontonagon, MI by the time light faded for the day. Cold and dripping weather had also played part to cut short on the other attractions nearby Munising, MI. One spot, even after it’s secluded location and muddy road (if you happen to enter many in-land roads with misleading navigational devices) , we wanted to visit was Kitch-iti-kipi at Palms book state park. Don’t be fooled by its tongue twister name. It is natural and scientific phenomena one has to visit to appreciate its unique beauty. But before Kitchi-iti-kipi, there was something else that had arrested our mind (and taste buds as well); Pasty.
Pasties are second popular food other then white fish in UP Michigan that one don’t want to miss out. And Muldoon’s pasty are famous. Before leaving Munising, MI, we had our hunger satiated with freshly backed and deliciously flakey hot pasty with equally satisfying chicken gravy at Muldoon’s pasty, concluded with decadent slice of apple pie.
Culinary mind chews on: Muldoon's pasty are really delicious treat you can give to yourself. Queue up early afternoon to beat the rush. They cost nominal and and also great choice as carry-out to heat it up later.
By the time we reached Kitch-iti-kipi, drizzling had picked up and threatened to transform itself into shower. Positively though, it had transformed the green surrounding of the Kitchi-iti-kipi into something surreal. Kitchi-iti-kipi, named after some Indian chieftain lost his life over some foolish quest, is natural spring housing gallons of water cycle through various fissures at its waterbed consisting of limestones. Most enticing part is this “cleaning” process makes the water crystal clear and temperate. A self-operated wooden gondola with open bottom was the way to observe emerald hued clear water and spring’s bottom. As if you were peeking into uniquely different world through some trans-dimensional portal, you could get glimpse of underwater life and water gushing out as muddy jets from fissures in its crystal clear glory. All and all, it was novel and informative experience.
Kitchi-iti-kipi was last stop for us to visit before we traveled further west towards our overnight stop at Ontonagon, MI. Driving to Ontonagon, MI was treat in itself. Drive was punctuated with dense forests of Ottawa national forest and Porcupine mountains wilderness state park where human footprint was minimal and roads were lonely except occasional passing vehicles. Frequently, road opened up into small quaint towns nearby lake shore with all the allure of driving by expanse of blue water with small piers and all. Staying at Ontonagon, MI brought advantage of starting the day early with all surrounding state parks and many waterfalls.
Date of Visit: 07-Jul-2021