Our next stop, and the main goal of the trip, was Tahquamenon Falls. I hadn't been there in the winter and pictures I've seen of this time of year I wanted some pictures. Since I had planned on including it in my State Park Project, it seemed like a good idea. Tahquamenon Falls park encompasses 46,179 acres is the second largest State Park in Michigan, the largest being the Porcupine Mountains. It is located west of Paradise, Michigan near Lake Superior and Whitefish Bay. The Tahquamenon River flows 94 miles from it's source to where it empties into Whitefish Bay. Tahquamenon Falls consists of two different sets of falls, the Upper Falls and the Lower Falls. When talking about the Falls, most people are speaking of the Upper Falls, which are what are pictured here. This is where the main park amenities are located. There are several vantage points scattered along the river from down the river to the lip of the falls.
Although I did not visit the Lower Falls or the Rivermouth area this trip, I will link to pages from previous visits at the end of this post. For some reason, Blogger won't let me link to them anywhere else.
North Country Scenic Trail which runs from New York to North Dakota.
One of the activities going on when we were there was an introduction to snow shoeing. There was no cost for this activity. Here a ranger was leading the group of participants.
In the background, you can see the building that is home to the gift shop and Camp 33. Camp 33 is a brewery and restaurant. The food there is pretty good, though I can't speak to the beer. Prices are moderate. The name is due to the fact that this was the location of the 33rd logging camp of the Barrett Logging Company. The current structure was built in 1996.
Toonerville Trolley. This involves catching a narrow gauge railroad at Soo Junction. At the end of the rail line, you catch a boat that takes you down the Tahquamenon River where it docks upstream from the falls. A short hike through the woods brings you to the vantage point here as well as one near the edge of the falls. The entire trip takes about five and a half to six hours.
Because a large part of the park was inaccessible, without hiking through the snow, I will link pictures to the Lower Falls here. They are a series of smaller cataracts. You can get a nice view of them from the mainland, but the best way to get a look at them is to rent a rowboat and row to the island that splits the falls. There, a path around the perimeter of the island gives you closeup views of the falls. I'm not sure of the total drop of the Lower Falls, but if you find yourself in the area, you owe it to yourself to take some time to visit there.
The River Mouth area was not plowed out. The area here is some distance from the Falls and is pretty flat. The campgrounds are to the west of M-123. Upon entry, the modern campground is to the north and the rustic campground is to the south and is spread along the length of the river. The river curves around a bit, before passing under M-123 where it empties into Whitefish Bay. There is a small boat launch right at the mouth of the river and it is not uncommon to see boats from the campground.
The NCT passes through this part of the park, along the road just north of the river until it moves away from the river and enters the woods. You can pick it up at the Lower or Upper Falls.
I hope you enjoyed this look at Tahquamenon Falls State Park.