I should say, thus far. Along with the most scenic spot the drive to said spot was beautiful. We drove along H58 through Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. This is a drive I highly recommend if you find yourself in the area. This section connects the towns of Grand Marais (east) to Munising (west). After looking up possible campsites we decided on Forest Lake State Forest Campground. It is located about 25 minutes southwest of Munising. Also a nice drive until you get to the road leading to the campground. I went ahead to scope it out for availability. This is a first come first serve state forest campground but as we have found, sometimes there aren’t many spots left even on a Monday. The back up plan to boondock somewhere in nearby Hiawatha National Forest. Upon arrival I quickly wondered if it would work for Ralphie, as the gravel road was quite rough. The entrance sign said 2 miles. It had many ruts and holes along the way, making it a long 2 miles. I took it slow and steady.
When I finally arrived at the campground, I was pleasantly surprised to find several open spots. In fact of the 26 sites, only 5 were occupied. This was a first during our summer months on the road. I assumed the road in deterred a lot of people. I drove back into town to meet up with Shane and get his opinion on taking Ralphie back on the bumpy road. He followed me back and assessed the road in the Volvo, declaring, “No problem! I’ll just take it really slow.”
It takes some time getting back to the campground but what a beautiful and secluded place right on Forest Lake. Many of the sites are on the lake with 3 sites that require the camper to walk in a short distance and have even more seclusion. We drove through the campground looking at all of the available sites. We choose the one with the best view of the lake and I must say our most scenic by far. Although this one wasn’t as large and spacious as Andrus Lake, the view could not be beat!
I absolutely loved the view out our front door. This is what I call picture perfect. Josie approved, quickly finding her napping spot in the sun.
I couldn’t stop smiling and feeling immense gratitude for such a wonderful spot to live for the next week. Our entire time here there were never more than 8 spots filled. With people coming and going throughout the week. It seems the rough road in did not deter everyone. There was even a travel trailer our size and a U-Haul with a trailer and car that arrived later in the week. But mostly it was tents and smaller campers.
Our only plans for the week, a day trip into Munising to check out the western side of Pictured Rocks and stock up on supplies. After that was accomplished in one day, we stayed put, not leaving again until it was time to travel to the next destination. Stay tuned for pictures from that day trip in the next post.
What a spot to park it for a week. I could have stayed longer but alas our black tank (RV talk for the waste tank) was nearing it’s capacity. And it’s safe to say you don’t want that one overfilling. Lucky for us we have never managed that gory feat.
During our stay we took a short kayaking trip out to a nearby island. Thinking we might go kayaking every day but the wind had other plans. We were not able to go back out until our last day when the wind finally shifted and let up enough for us to kayak out to 2 of the islands. The wind shift allowed us to float back nice and easy.
There was a resident bald eagle we had the pleasure of seeing more than once. In fact, the last day we were able to kayak out, he was perched high above in a tree on the first island. I attempted to get a photo of him. However, the zoom I have is just not enough. It was cool to say I was on a island with a bald eagle, even for a short time. He flew off as soon as Josie disembarked from the kayak. Didn’t seem to mind me quietly walking around with my camera. Once I offload those photos from my Nikon I’ll share what I captured here on the blog.
There were these cool large tree trunks on the island. We both puzzled as to how they got there or are they the remains of a once large forested area. Who knows? Josie is in the first one for size comparison.
A couple of mornings I woke early to a beautiful sunrise. One evening we watched the moon rise. I loved watching the sunlight hit the trees and water as it started to set on the back side of us. The color changes throughout the day were magical, all from the way the sun hits the surrounding landscape.
I practiced yoga lakeside, meditated outside to the sounds of nature, and recorded one of my yoga classes down by the lake. We had campfires while admiring the view. Sometimes I would just sit and look out over the lake in awe.
This place was truly a treasure. Peace, quiet, serenity, and surrounded by nature. I am forever grateful we managed to find this beautiful spot. Despite the “rough road” to get here it was completely worth it. The day we left I felt sad to leave such a wonderful place. But also happy we had a week to truly enjoy all it had to offer. This is one of my favorite things about this lifestyle, the everchanging landscape and views. The chance to explore new places and to have the time to soak it all in.
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