Up North Adventures

My favorite adventure dude was in town from LA for five days, and you're damn sure I made him travel to the infamous and magical place we Michiganders refer to as "up north."  Chris Miele is a nature landscape photographer, and I wanted to make sure he got to see just what makes Michigan - Pure Michigan. What better time than in the fall while the leaves are changing colors and the brisk breeze is starting to blow in? And it just so happened I needed to get a few new finds for the store. So we loaded the adventure van, Betsy, and headed out for a quick road trip - destination: mildly unknown.

I knew I wanted to bring him to Ludington because that was my summer stomping ground as a youngster. The beaches, dunes, state parks and small downtown area are just so perfectly "up north" Michigan. We also adventured through Pentwater, Scottville, Walhalla, Newaygo and Grand Rapids. With a few little stops along the journey, we camped in the back of Betsy while enjoying the fall time adventure. It was so delightful to drive down dirt roads and stumble across naturey goodness. 

Deep in the Walhalla woods with a smidge of sunshine fighting its way through. 

Deep in the Walhalla woods with a smidge of sunshine fighting its way through. 

The tide rolling in as the sun sets.

The tide rolling in as the sun sets.

Collecting feathers on Lake Michigan beaches to make dreamcatchers. 

Collecting feathers on Lake Michigan beaches to make dreamcatchers. 

The beaches of Ludington during a perfectly autumn sunset.

The beaches of Ludington during a perfectly autumn sunset.

If only I could carry this driftwood home with me...

If only I could carry this driftwood home with me...

As if the trip weren't magical enough, I found a message in a bottle washed up on the shore as I was attempting to position myself directly between the setting sun and the rising full moon. Simply magic. 

As if the trip weren't magical enough, I found a message in a bottle washed up on the shore as I was attempting to position myself directly between the setting sun and the rising full moon. Simply magic. 

Those teeth. Chomp chomp.

Those teeth. Chomp chomp.

My favorite up north place. Right before the State Park entrance in Ludington with the full moon rising in the distance. 

My favorite up north place. Right before the State Park entrance in Ludington with the full moon rising in the distance. 

Goodnight moon

Goodnight moon

Dock hangs on Hamlin Lake.

Dock hangs on Hamlin Lake.

Hit the rusty gold jackpot - Scottville shopping spree.

Hit the rusty gold jackpot - Scottville shopping spree.

Dirt roads and uncharted territory. 

Dirt roads and uncharted territory. 

Betsy. 

Betsy. 

Standing out front of the cabin where I summered as a child wearing the coziest of sweaters and the softest boyfriend beanie. Lots of memories of collecting toads, picking blackberries, making bonfires, and learning to fish happened in these forests. 

Standing out front of the cabin where I summered as a child wearing the coziest of sweaters and the softest boyfriend beanie. Lots of memories of collecting toads, picking blackberries, making bonfires, and learning to fish happened in these forests.