Archive for April, 2009
With another spell of warmer weather, the ice on Munising Bay is officially gone. Last Thursday, April 23rd was the official date. (My prediction of mid-May, in an earlier post, was a bit off.) The weather has been actually pretty unpredictable in the last two weeks or so. First, he had a big warm-up and then by early last week it was snowing again. The Munising area didn’t see much for snow accumulation like some parts of the western U.P. In the far west, one particular town received almost 30 inches of snow in two days! A pretty powerful storm decided to hangout for a couple days over the western and central U.P. The line of accumulation ended around the Au Train area. Then by last Thursday and Friday, we had the warmer weather again! It gets quite tricky trying to dress for 30 degrees one day and then 70 the next. Today, the sun is finally shining and after a few days of rain and clouds. Around town, the grass has started to green a little bit and the trees are starting to show buds.
With May just around the corner, many area businesses and organizations are gearing up for the summer season. In less than a month, Pictured Rocks Cruise and Glass Bottom Boat Shipwreck Tours will be open for business. (Check out the Attractions page for more info!) It should be a great summer and we hope you come for a visit!
Below is another spring flower ready to bloom and the alley of which I took a photo of back on March 27, 2009. Only a little pile of snow left after a month. Click for original photo.
It looks like spring has officially arrived in Munising and the rest of the U.P. This entire week has been sunny and gradually warming as the week goes on. Around town, most of the snow has melted except for piles from snowplowing. Outside of town, and to east, there’s still quite a bit of snow on the ground and it will probably be in to May before it’s gone. On Munising Bay, there’s still ice but it’s highly unstable. Some people are still ice fishing but from the luxury of a flat-bottom boat. You know the ice is bad when they’re resorting to that. Another sign of spring is the wildlife sightings. This past week, I’ve seen a few sandhill cranes, variety of ducks and even a fox chasing a coyote across the highway.
With the warm weather today, I decided to go for a walk and bring the camera along. Here’s a few shots from around town.
Has spring sprung where you live? Leave a comment and let us know!
Another week goes by and the big April snowstorm still hasn’t arrived. I wrote a while back about how it seems we get one or two big storms every year before all of the snow is gone. This year, it looks like we could be left out. (Caution: There’s still time…) Earlier this week it did snow and was pretty dang cold for being April. The ice in Munising Bay and out in AuTrain still exists and people are still ice fishing, although it’s pretty dangerous. It’ll be fun to see how long it takes for the ice in the bay to be completely gone. (I will guess mid-May.) There also still quite a bit of snow on the ground and it doesn’t look we have any real warm-ups in the forecast.
For myself, I’ve decided to hang-up the ice fishing gear for the year. After going out almost every weekend since mid-December, it’s time to move on to the next season of fishing. That would be hitting the rivers for some steelhead fishing. A steelhead is actually a rainbow trout that lives in the Great Lakes (or ocean) and travels back to the river it was hatched from to spawn (reproduce). It’s amazing to think these fish can travel miles and find the exact river they born in! I can’t even remember what I did yesterday! Catching these fish is a challenge because they’re pretty big (20″+) and they have a tendency of blending with their underwater surroundings. The river depth is usually pretty shallow so the fish can see you before you see them. If you do manage to hook a big one, be ready to jump in the river for chase. Like every other steelhead/trout fisherman, I can’t tell you where to go. I’ve been sworn to secrecy. Just get outdoors and explore, you’ll find them eventually.
Also, thanks to everyone who left comments on last week’s posting. Really nice to read about your favorite waterfall. Please comment anytime!
With a not whole lot happening this week, I’ve decided to post my top 5 favorite waterfalls in the Munising area. The number of waterfalls in the area is quite impressive but the exact number isn’t really clear. You’ll find (like we did) that many different people have a different number for how many exist in the area. On our waterfalls page we’ve labeled 15 in Alger County. There’s definitely more but they either unmarked or we didn’t feel they should be counted as a “waterfall.” (A trickle of water over a rock doesn’t count as a waterfall to me.)
As for my top 5, this is solely based on my personal opinion. It was actually pretty difficult coming up with only 5 because each them are unique. So here we go…
5. Munising Falls
This 50-foot waterfall is probably one of the easiest to reach in the area and its super close to town. The quarter-mile paved trail winds through a beautiful forest and along a stream. The falls are pretty quiet so you don’t really hear or see them until you’re really close. Once you get to the end platform, you’re at the base of the falls looking up. Also, really neat in the winter!
4. Mosquito Falls
This secluded falls is my adventurous pick because of the 1.8-mile round-trip through rolling forest to reach the falls. The Mosquito River actually flows over 3 drops with the biggest being 8 feet. So it’s not the biggest around but seeing 3 falls really close together is pretty unique.
3. Spray Falls
Spray Falls has to be one of the most unique in the entire Great Lakes region. At 70 feet, this beauty flows directly into Lake Superior and creates a beautiful scene! The downside, it’s not easily viewable. The best view is from a boat but it can be seen from the shore while on the North Country Trail.
2. Wagner Falls
This waterfall is probably one of the most photographed in the area. It has a well-groomed half-mile walking trail through pine and hemlock trees, and a nice viewing platform at the end. The falls resembles a staircase with a series of drops that seems endless. Really pretty in the fall, too!
1. Miners Falls
At 50 feet, Miners Falls is a real gem. Following a .6 mile trek through a beautiful forest, you begin to hear the falls before you can see them. The falls are set in a sandstone canyon and create a cool mist from the large amount of water flowing over the cliff’s edge on to the boulders below.
So when you’re in the Munising area, make sure to visit these beautiful falls and definitely bring your camera! Our waterfalls page has directions, photos and the rest of the waterfalls in Alger County.
Do you have a different top 5 waterfalls list? Let me know below by clicking the comments section!