At first look the small farming city of Posen, which is located alongside State Route 65 in northeastern Michigan and hosts an annual Potato Competition, doesn’t seem like a logical meet-up spot to kick off a daylong bike tour. However the Route 65 Diner provides up traditional breakfast and lunch fare, the close by Posen EZ Mart is a handy place to replenish, and the village is close to Lake Huron, the second largest of the Nice Lakes, so it’s excellent place to begin for a Lake Huron lighthouses loop.
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This scenic route by means of the northeast nook of Michigan’s Decrease Peninsula is about 180 miles and offers a leisurely day of driving with stops for sightseeing and meals. It provides distinctive historic websites, lighthouses, shipwrecks, wildlife sanctuaries, parks and seashores on Lake Huron, and paved roads by means of deep timber forests.
The experience is greatest accomplished between Memorial Day and Labor Day however could possibly be accomplished earlier within the spring or later within the fall relying on the climate. We took our experience in September.
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About 5 miles north of Posen, Route 65 dead-ends at U.S. Route 23, which runs alongside the sting of Lake Huron’s Michigan shore from Mackinaw Metropolis to Saginaw. We headed east on Route 23 and shortly entered Thompson’s Harbor State Park. We turned onto Outdated State Street, adopted it to the top, and went north on East Grand Lake Street, which took us onto a slim peninsula that juts into Lake Huron between North Bay and Presque Isle Bay.
On the appropriate, we noticed the Outdated Presque Isle Lighthouse, which was inbuilt 1840. As a result of harsh climate on Lake Huron, the unique lighthouse deteriorated, and the New Presque Isle Lighthouse was inbuilt 1870 farther north close to the top of the peninsula. Standing 113.5 ft tall, it is among the tallest lighthouses on the Nice Lakes. Each lighthouses have been restored and are a part of a 99-acre park that features a playground, picnic space, pavilion, reward store, museum, and nature trails.
Adjoining to the New Presque Isle Lighthouse is a keeper’s home that was inbuilt 1905 and is now a museum. Admission is free, however we paid $5 to climb the 130 steps to the highest of the lighthouse for glorious views of Lake Huron and the Presque Isle space. The buildings and grounds are open to the general public each day from mid-Might by means of mid-October.
We returned to U.S. Route 23 and rode south, discovering a number of curves alongside the sides of Grand Lake and Lengthy Lake, that are simply inland from Lake Huron. We made our option to Alpena, a city of about 10,000 residents that sits on the northern shore of Thunder Bay. Close by are two lighthouses, however they’re out within the lake on islands and solely accessible by boat.
The Thunder Bay Nationwide Marine Sanctuary protects an space of Lake Huron often known as “Shipwreck Alley” the place there have been greater than 100 traditionally vital shipwrecks. A number of the wrecks are shut sufficient to the floor for sightseeing, which we did on a two-hour shipwreck tour on a glass-bottom boat referred to as the Woman Michigan. We additionally visited the Nice Lakes Maritime Heritage Middle, a museum with displays and items of boats that washed ashore.
After we left the museum, the Royal Enfield and Triumph riders in our group insisted we try a British tavern in downtown Alpena referred to as the Black Sheep Pub. It’s embellished with British flags and memorabilia, and the menu consists of wealthy and engaging pub grub like fish and chips, a pork burger drizzled with vinegar, Scotch eggs, and pickled chips.
After lunch, we continued south on Route 23 by means of elements of Thunder Bay River State Forest, Au Sable State Forest, and Huron Nationwide Forest. That is chainsaw nation. In Ossineke, we handed colourful concrete statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox constructed within the Forties by Paul Domke, who additionally constructed the creatures within the close by Dinosaur Gardens Prehistoric Zoo.
South of Alcona, we visited Sturgeon Level Lighthouse, which was inbuilt 1870. The 70-foot lighthouse is maintained by the U.S. Coast Guard and is open to the general public. The keeper’s home is a maritime museum open from Memorial Day to mid-September.
At Harrisville, the Harley and Indian riders in our group made it recognized that it was time for some American meals. We rode west on State Route 72 into the center of Huron Nationwide Forest after which turned north on State Route 65 to Curran. Simply north of city, we stopped on the Lunch Block and had a correct lumberjack breakfast.
Full from our hearty meal, we additional compressed the suspension of our bikes and continued north on Route 65 by means of a piece of forest so dense that no paved roads cross to the east. Werth Street lastly appeared and offered a paved route with a number of curves again to Alpena. Alternatively, you’ll be able to proceed north on 65 and switch east on State Route 32.
Simply north of Alpena, previous the wildlife sanctuary, we picked up Lengthy Rapids Street, which meanders alongside the Thunder Bay River heading northwest to the city of Bolton. We continued north on Bolton Street, then west on Lengthy Lake Freeway, and eventually again onto Route 65 for our return to Posen.
If Michigan is in your bike journey plans, try the northeastern a part of the state close to the Lake Huron shore. The roads present scenic views of the lake and a few mellow curves and hills, and the lighthouses and historic websites are a pleasant diversion when it’s time to stretch your legs.