Monday, August 12, 2013

We're in way northern Wisconsin

First, an alert:  I have a gazillion photos below. Well, make that 15.  But the USA's North Shore is such a pretty place.

Anyway, we left Michigan’s Upper Peninsula yesterday, but not before two more people told us “Welcome to Michigan!”  They were locals who noticed our Utah license plates when we were at the RV dump site and drove up to say hello. (Jim says you meet the nicest people at the dump site.)

Now we’re Cheese Heads, as we’re at Kreher City Park in Ashland, Wisconsin. The park is right on Lake Superior.  Besides RV spaces there is also a picnic pavilion, kids' playground and a large boat dock area. 

Here’s Jim's description of the drive from the UP to our new very temporary home in Wisconsin:  very pleasant, little traffic, lots of trees, very green.   Near the western edge of the peninsula we saw a weird, large statue of a guy on skis (I didn't get a photo because I was too busy gaping) and a sign that said  “The ski capitol of the Midwest." Our road map indicated a Wolf Mountain (elevation 1,826) was nearby.  Of note on the Wisconsin part of our trip was the Bad River Indian Reservation.  The reservation belongs to the Objibwe Indians, also known as Chippewa.  I tried to find out why it’s called the “Bad” River and I’m sure some local knows, but I can't find it on line. If anyone out there knows, please pass it along.

Now some pics:

On the way to Wisconsin:  A woman at Copper Harbor told us August is the beginning of autumn in the UP.  Trees we saw just south of Fort Wilkins State Park reflect that.
More scenery in the UP on the way to Wisconsin.
Lake Superior as seen from our campground in Ashland, Wisconsin.  How come it's always so smooth on days we don't use our kayaks?
Our campground is near a boat launch.  Here's a big speed boat we saw getting cleaned up after a spin on the lake.
Jim and Cooper taking a stroll at Kreher City Park in Ashland, Wisconsin.  It costs $30 a day to stay here but you can get a better rate if you rent a site for a month.  That's not for us -- at least not this time.  I told Jim I'd like to spend more time here, and at Copper Harbor and Munising, Michigan.
Our campsite a Kreher City Park (that's us in the middle with the kayaks on our tow car.)  Jim has a good view of Lake Superior from his usual spot in our rear lounge.
Downtown Ashland, Wisconsin.  The city had a population of 8,216 in the 2010 census.  When Christopher Columbus landed in the Americas, the Objibwe Indians lived here.  The first Europeans to arrive were French fur traders in 1659.
The former Soo Line Ore Dock can be seen from our campground.  It was built in 1916, ceased operations in 1965, and is currently being demolished as you can see from the photo I took this morning.  A fellow camper told me that trains used to take ore to the building above, where it would be dumped into ships headed for the eastern industrial cities on of the Great Lakes.  But, he said, most of the hauling is now done by train.  He also told me similarly demolished docks had been beautified with trees and he thought that might happen here.
An eight-block area of downtown Ashland is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to 14 murals based on actual historic events and people.  This mural depicts nearby Apostle Island lighthouses and their keepers.  To take a virtual tour of the murals, click here.  
Ashland City Hall.  Ashland has some well-preserved and beautiful architecture. And, according to Wikipedia, "...lake effect snow can be a phenomenon" here.  I do not doubt that.

This morning we drove our tow car further north to Bayfield, the gateway to Wisconsin's Apostle Islands. The Apostle Islands are on Lake Superior's south shore and Wisconsin's north shore and consist of 21 islands and a 12-mile stretch of mainland beaches.  We went to the Visitors' Center but to get to any of the islands, of course, you have to take a ferry.  Instead, we wandered around beautiful Bayfield, did some shopping (I bought kayaking shoes -- shoes made out of a wet suit-type material that are snug at the ankle and won't let water in), had lunch and wished for more time.
 A Bayfield, Wisconsin home.
Jim walking near the pier in Bayfield.
A window box in downtown Bayfield. Homes in Bayfield and also nearby Washburn have beautiful gardens as well.
After we left Bayfield we drove to nearby Hauser's Superior View Farm/Bayfield Winery. They belong to an organization called "Harvest Hosts" that we're members of, and that allows RVers to spend a night on their property for free. I had talked with them about doing so but we ended up staying at Kreher Park in Ashland instead.  They'd been so nice when I spoke with them that we visited and bought a bottle of wine. The building above is their store.
And, a road sign seen not only on smaller roads but also in downtown Ashland.


  1. Great Picture's and Commentary! I am wearing out my road atlas keeping up with your explorations.

  2. Carl! I've been worried about you:) Have to tell you that today we drove through the Fond Du Lac Indian Reservation. I started looking for the town and then realized we were in Minnesota.

    Hope you had a great Camp Grandchild.