Historical Photos – Camping out in the U.P. 1880s style

Camping the hard way - 1880's Historical Photos from Mikel B. Classen Collection Going camping back in the late 1800s was a lot different than it is today. There was no Coleman Company, no L.L. Bean, no ergonomic backpacks. And hiking shoes, not a chance. The equipment was heavy and bulky while the wilderness was … Continue reading Historical Photos – Camping out in the U.P. 1880s style

Fire on the Trail

Stopping a forest fire before it happens. I want to write about something I saw yesterday while driving through the woods near Trout Lake, here in the U.P. I was driving a backroad, surprise, surprise, looking for an old ghost town called Wilwin (more on that here). As I was driving the old two-track road, … Continue reading Fire on the Trail

Historical Photos – U.P. Fishing

Historical Fishing Pictures from the Upper Peninsula's Past Pictures from the Mikel Classen Historical Pictures Collection Fishing has always been a part of basic human survival. Plain and simple, fish are great to eat. Around the world people use fish as a major source of their diet, but, the squirmy things are an awful lot … Continue reading Historical Photos – U.P. Fishing

Historical Pictures – Mackinac National Park 1875-1895

When Mackinac Island was a National Park by Mikel B. Classen. Photos from the Mikel Classen Historical Pictures Collection Every year Mackinac Island is inundated with tourists. The island in St. Ignace Bay has always been a focus of attention. After being the hub of the fur trade, the island saw a decline as fortunes … Continue reading Historical Pictures – Mackinac National Park 1875-1895

Little Lake Lost or What Happens When the Dam Breaks

Discovering a ghost lake in Mackinac County, Michigan. Writing and photos by Mikel B. Classen I hit the road today, with no particular destination. That means I'm really susceptable to signs pointing to nearly anywhere. It happened in Mackinac County. The sign said "Brook Trout Pond Landing." I really do stick my nose into just … Continue reading Little Lake Lost or What Happens When the Dam Breaks

Historical Pictures – The First Soo Locks – The State Lock

The Soo Locks - The Early Years - 1855 - 1888 Pictures are from the Mikel Classen Historical Pictures Collection except portaging picture from sign. The Soo Locks began in 1855. They were dug so that ships would no longer have to either shoot the St. Mary's River Rapids, of have the ship portaged through … Continue reading Historical Pictures – The First Soo Locks – The State Lock

Rails and Rivers – Tahquamenon Falls Train and Riverboat Tours

Tahquamenon Falls Train and Riverboat Tours – Alias “Toonerville Trolley and Tom Sawyer Riverboat Ride Photos by Mikel B. Classen. Historical pictures courtesy of the Mikel Classen Historical Pictures Collection. As long as I can remember, the Toonerville Trolley and the Tahquamenon Falls Riverboat Tours has been at Soo Junction 15 miles east of Newberry. … Continue reading Rails and Rivers – Tahquamenon Falls Train and Riverboat Tours

Historical Photos – Whalebacks – Extinct Ships of the Great Lakes

Images are from my personal historical photos collection Whaleback ships were a unique design that was adopted to ship ore across the Great Lakes and particularly Lake Superior.  Their shape was designed to lessen the impact of turbulent surf. When fully loaded they looked more like a submarine than a surface ship. They were used … Continue reading Historical Photos – Whalebacks – Extinct Ships of the Great Lakes

Garnet Lake – Garnet Ghost Town – A Paddle to the Past

Garnet Lake Campground – Finding a Lost Past in Mackinac County A Point North I came here on a whim. I didn’t know what to expect. The sign, “Garnet Lake State Forest Campground” had an arrow pointing down a sideroad. Those are the kinds of things that arouse my curiosity when I am cruising the … Continue reading Garnet Lake – Garnet Ghost Town – A Paddle to the Past