Rock Picking Trip – Black River Harbor & Little Girls Point
In late July I took my niece Kristi and her family to Black River Harbor, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, to show them the campground, hiking trails, waterfalls, and do some Lake Superior rock picking. I was under orders from Ross to find an agate or at least some good looking rocks to add to the batch he’ll be tumbling soon. He has some new tumbling pellets he wanted to try out and report on his rock tumbling page on our SuperiorTrails.com website.
When we arrived at the harbor it started to turn dark and soon it was blowing and raining very hard. The park pavilion was being used by a wedding party so we took shelter up by the campground area. Luckily the storm didn’t last too long. We took a hike on the trail to Rainbow Falls and took some pictures. Black River Harbor National Recreation Area is on the path of the North Country Hiking Trail and in addition has a network of trails that lead to 5 waterfalls within the park. The hike to Rainbow Falls is one of the shorter ones. You can see pictures of all of the Black River Waterfalls on our SuperiorTrails website. Since it had just rained the falls were running nicely but not as frothing as earlier in May (see picture).
There’s a real nice vista of the lake from the campground which is located on a high bluff high above the actual harbor itself.
Then everyone went to the beach to do some rock picking. The kids and Krisit had never seen Lake Superior before. They were really impressed – “Wow, it looks like an Ocean.” They liked how the sand beaches stretched for miles as far as you could see. No hotels, no man-made structures, hardly any boats. Just crystal clear water, beach, trees, mountains – – – and thousands and thousands of rocks for the picking. Pretty soon everyone was bit by the rock-picking bug. The kids would say “Mom, is this a good one?” or “Aunt Jo-Jo, would Uncle Ross like this one?” Wasn’t too long before they were also in the water swimming. Lots of pretty rocks were found for Ross’s tumbling and each of the kids took some special rocks home with them. Krisit thinks she may have found an agate and will be checking with Uncle Ross later to see if she lucked out. (She did – see her agate in the picture in our story on Lake Superior Rocks & Agate hunting.)
Since everyone liked rock picking at Black River Harbor I thought I should treat them to the more well known Rock Picking beach in the area: Little Girls Point. As the crow flies it is probably less than 10 miles away but we needed about 40 minutes by road. Everyone was even more impressed with the beach at Little Girls Point. Here there must be millions of rocks. Where we were no sand at all. You dig down and just find more rocks. Now if you walk down the beach about a mile or two you will find some sand, more like the beach at Black River Harbor – sand and rocks. In addition to rock picking, more swimming. Swimming is a little tougher at Little Girls Point because the bottom is solid rock, from small pebbles to rock boulders almost too heavy to pick up. Here’s some more pictures of the park and campground at Little Girls Point
At dinner time we left Little Girls Point to return to Ironwood. Had a meal at Mickey Ds and then adjourned to the Comfort Inn in Ironwood. There the kids got in some more swimming. I was quite impressed with the Comfort Inn. Top notch guest rooms, everything was very clean, great pool, friendly service. Their complimentary breakfast had lots of selections; you won’t go hungry at the Comfort Inn.
The next day we drove back to Southern Wisconsin. Everyone had a great time and Krisit and her family are looking forward to returning at some point in the future for an extended camping trip. Think we have some more Lake Superior fans.
Jo – Joquilt@gmail.com