Friday, July 30, 2010

Sault Ste. Marie and the Bridge!

The next day we went to Sault Ste. Marie and to the Soo Locks. It was a fun day and while we have been there before, it is always great to see. And this time, unlike the others, there was a freighter going through one of the locks. We stayed and watched that ship and a sightseeing boat and a pleasure boat about the size of ours lock through. It was quite interesting and the weather was great for watching. Afterwards we went to the Lockview Restaurant and had lunch. Then we visited the shops before heading back to the camp.

We left early the next morning and headed south to Mackinac City. We got to the bridge before noon. It was very windy and I was a little nervous making this crossing. I don't care for bridges and this one is no exception. It certainly is not for lightweights. The last crossing we made was very early in the morning with no wind. There was wind all day this time, so there was no escaping it. Whitecaps were roiling in the water below. The first part of the passage was smooth, but when we got to the first tower, there was road construction and we had to move to the inside lane which is open grate. The open grate coupled with the wind gusts made the motorhome pretty squirrelly on the deck. The maximum speed is 45, but loaded trucks are reduced to 20 and I figured with the wind I would slow down. It helped immensely and I was glad that when I did get hit with wind, I didn't have anyone next to me going the other way. I was glad to get back on terra firma in the lower peninsula.

We drove down the east side on Lake Huron and stopped at the Mackinac Mill Creek Campground. BIG RIGS STAY AWAY FROM THIS CAMPGROUND. What a mess. Course, they are "big rig friendly" in the books and their website and I have to say our site was nice. HOWEVER, going in they have metal road signs on stands in the roadway and you have to wind your way around them. All traffic going to the west side of the campground (which is where the big rig sites are) must enter AND exit on the same road and the approaches and the turn itself are no wider than one lane, so you must sit and wait. As we approached the turn we notice a large semi truck waiting to come out. We couldn't turn and neither could he, so we drove on and used the map to get ourselves around the roads and headed back the right direction. We were back in an older section with very tight turns and two way traffic on one lane roads. What a fright. We finally ended up back where we were to take a turn and went the wrong direction and drove right back out of the park on the roads we were supposed to be going in the opposite direction! GRRRRRR. No where to turn around. We drove three miles back down the road to turn around and then drove back into the camp. This time a large 45-foot motorhome was coming out. We both squeaked by each other and we finally made the turn and got back into our camp. We got into our site without a problem and I promptly got the wine out and had a glass to calm my nerves. Terry took a nap. We decided when we left the next day we would leave early in the morning and I drove ahead in the truck to clear a path. That worked.

We spent the rest of the day exploring the city and shopping. Found a lot of fudge shops. . . surprise, surprise. But once again, the weather was great and we saw the boats running back and forth to Mackinac Island.

We did run out and see the McGulpin Light, another light house on the Great Lakes. It had fewer steps to negotiate, so I had an easier time of that.

We got out in the evening, after dark, to take a picture of the bridge. It was lit, but it was hard to get a very good picture. The last time we were here, it was the 50th anniversary of the bridge and there were a lot more lights, but it is still neat to see at night.

Till next time. . .


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