Sleeping Bear Dunes

Janice

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We never tire of Sleeping Bear Dunes! This national lakeshore along Lake Michigan is full of beautiful, fun hiking up and down the enormous sand dunes.

From Pyramid Point - looking toward South Manitou Island
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At Petersen Beach by Platte River Campground
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The hardest part of the the Dune Climb is ahead of us
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Views of Big Glen and Little Glen Lakes
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Chuck the Mauler

Formally known as "kcwins"
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My backyard. Watch for poison ivy. What else did you see/do while in the area? Thanks for sharing the pics.
 

Janice

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How nice for this to be your backyard!

Yes, there was a lot of poison ivy - I am very careful to avoid it.

In addition to Pyramid Point, the Dune Climb, and enjoying the beach where we camped at Platte, we had a great time at North Bar Lake and hanging out with friends. It was a short trip - didn't do any boating or make it to Pierce Stocking or the Leelanau Peninsula this time.

Someday we'd love to explore North Manitou. Have you been there? Do you have recommendations we should check out for places that are off the beaten path?
 

kwc

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We visited this area two years ago as we traveled westward. Climbing that dune was crazy! We visited the lighthouse at Leelanau (little biting flies were everywhere and very annoying) and took a wine tasting “cruise” on a tall ship out of Traverse City. Sunsets were amazing there!
 

Janice

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We visited this area two years ago as we traveled westward. Climbing that dune was crazy! We visited the lighthouse at Leelanau (little biting flies were everywhere and very annoying) and took a wine tasting “cruise” on a tall ship out of Traverse City. Sunsets were amazing there!
Yes, sunset over Lake Michigan is incredible. I imagine it's similar over the Pacific, but I haven't spent enough time on that coast to know!
 

Reef&Ruins

Colorado Plateau is calling...
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That dune climb is only for those who like self-inflicted pain.
Even climbing dunes at the Oregon Dunes can be murderous at times. And they are way smaller.
 

Janice

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That dune climb is only for those who like self-inflicted pain.
Even climbing dunes at the Oregon Dunes can be murderous at times. And they are way smaller.
Ah - but it was beautiful! And provided some necessary cardio preparation for my upcoming Winds trip, although not at altitude and not with a heavy pack on!
 

Jackson

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Beautiful photos. I love seeing the how the water depth falls off so quickly.

It's interesting to me that Indiana Dunes is a national park but dunes up in Michigan like this aren't.
 

Janice

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Beautiful photos. I love seeing the how the water depth falls off so quickly.

It's interesting to me that Indiana Dunes is a national park but dunes up in Michigan like this aren't.
Hmm... politics we assume... Indiana Dunes switched from national lakeshore to national park in 2019 after many previous years of unsuccessful attempts; Pence is from Indiana. I don't know if there's been a similar effort in Michigan to redesignate Sleeping Bear as a national park. I'm sure I'm biased, but after many trips to Sleeping Bear's uncrowded, pristine scenery that goes on and on for miles, we were very disappointed in Indiana Dunes the one (and only) time we visited; at both ends of the long beach smokestacks are very visible and the industry along the coast (Gary etc.) cannot be ignored.

On a more positive note, the lake was fascinating on our first day, as huge storms the previous day had churned up the sand and made those stripes of tan and gorgeous turquoise before the deeper blue/green color that's typical. The next day the sand wasn't visible like that in the water and the turquoise was gone. The lake color varies tremendously depending on the weather and time of day.
 

Reef&Ruins

Colorado Plateau is calling...
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National Park designation, like everything else it seems these days, is political. Having visited Indiana Dunes, Sleeping Bear Dunes, and Pictured Rocks which are most of the national lakeshores (Apostle Islands is the other one), I would say Indiana Dunes is definitely now where near the other two I have visited in terms of scenery and the like. I've heard it said that Indiana Dunes has some very special ecological zones and according wildlife that maybe the others don't have.
On a side note, there is no way the St Louis Arch deserves to be a national park.
 

Titans

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Beautiful photos! Gorgeous sunset. It seems we have some colorful sunsets lately on days with haze from the wild fires. Thanks for sharing. Have fun on your upcoming backpacking trip!
 

Chuck the Mauler

Formally known as "kcwins"
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Bishop Lake and Dusy are close together. Is there some reason you are planning to camp at Bishop Lake also? The latter has better views. While Evolution Lake is lovely, it has also become quite busy. There was a group of ~20 backpackers when I was there a month ago, playing music and acting like they were at a SoCal beach. If it were me, I would camp in a quieter (equally scenic) spot before that. There are many options.

How nice for this to be your backyard!

Yes, there was a lot of poison ivy - I am very careful to avoid it.

In addition to Pyramid Point, the Dune Climb, and enjoying the beach where we camped at Platte, we had a great time at North Bar Lake and hanging out with friends. It was a short trip - didn't do any boating or make it to Pierce Stocking or the Leelanau Peninsula this time.

Someday we'd love to explore North Manitou. Have you been there? Do you have recommendations we should check out for places that are off the beaten path?

Yes, I know North Manitou like the back of my hand. I cut my teeth there, backpacking as both a kid and adult. So much to see and explore there. Knowing the history of the island before going is very helpful. There is a hidden spring, statue and all kinds of off trail travel that will get you to some really cool places. You can't get lost lol.
 

Janice

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Dec 5, 2017
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Yes, I know North Manitou like the back of my hand. I cut my teeth there, backpacking as both a kid and adult. So much to see and explore there. Knowing the history of the island before going is very helpful. There is a hidden spring, statue and all kinds of off trail travel that will get you to some really cool places. You can't get lost lol.
Great to know - thanks!
 
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