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Honeymoon But With Kids: Copper Country on the Keweenaw Peninsula

Van Riper State Park had a bicycle pump track. I thought Meadow would have wanted to try it but she wasn't interested.
 
We had to make it the Keweenaw, asap. 
 
Did we?

We wanted to eat at the Drive In but it didn't open until 11. By some miracle we were up early and ready before it opened. To waste some time we played at Baraga State Park. We probably should have stayed at this campground as they had showers. 


I guess Brooke meant for us to only stop for frozen custard.

The food was meh.

We mostly wanted to go to this place because they have frozen custard. 

Then it was time to see the Quincy Mine. Scott somehow forgot how expensive it was to go. 

We've been spending so little and having so much fun. Expensive museums just don't vibe with me. To be honest the Quincy Mine is worth the cost.

They warned that it was cold in the mine and to dress appropriately. I wasn't too worried because last time they gave us coats. While waiting for the tour I only saw hard hats and no coats. 

I wondered what happened to the giant slab of copper. 


Brooke showed Theo pictures of us here 10 years ago. She probably did that a lot on Honeymoon 2.

So precious!

Where did the coats go?!

Another recreation 10 years apart. 


The lift is still so cool. They built this thing for a large sum of money, but only used it for a short period of time. Thanks Great Depression.


People kept commenting that our kids were so well behaved. They just don't like attention from other people so stay quiet in public settings. 

Especially around adults that aren't named Brooke or Scottie.




They had us walk the mine instead of riding in a cart. I guess I should have worn my hiking boots.

At least we didn't wear white shoes.


Meadow and I were always way ahead of everyone else. 


I couldn't imagine working down here for many hours every day. 

Scary stuff. Amazing what people put themselves through to feed their families.

And then back up we went.


Afterwards we stopped in Calumet at the Keewenaw National Historic Park Visitor Center to pick up Meadow's next Junior Ranger booklet. The center had a really nice museum. The kids played while we explored. 

Mostly Brooke did because I thought it rude to leave our children behind unattended.

Too bad they couldn't completely restore the original paint. 


Then we walked around Calumet. The kids were not impressed by the many abandoned and rehabbed beauties. 



It doesn't feel like too much has changed in the 10 years since we were here. But a few shops did open near the visitors center.

We thought we would end our Michigan trip at our favorite off the grid cabin. It was weird to see everything so green and overgrown. 

Theo tried helping as I pulled our cart full of crap.

It didn't feel quite the same without Blake and Daniel. 

We tried talking them into meeting us here, but they couldn't make it.

Meadow agrees. 

It was nice to be able to hang out outside though. 

Hula hoops FTW.

Meadow found some of her watercolor paintings from last time and got really excited to paint again. 


Day 14
We explored the northern reaches of the Keweenaw on our second to last day in the UP.

Theo made a home for all of his cars and characters.

After lots of convincing we got everyone out of the house. Meadow wanted to stay all day and paint. 

Once these kids get settled in, it's like pulling teeth to get them to do anything.

Pumping water in the cabin to do dishes was a lot of work. We decided to skip making meals and go out to eat instead. 

We got breakfast at the Tamarack Inn up in Copper Harbor. Pretty much everything was closed when we visited in winter.

Theo agreed that this place was very good.


Apparently bacon is better dipped in water. 

Werido.

Usually our adventures involve finding a waterfall. This time I let Scott have his moment with an old growth forest: Estivant Pines. 

We took the mixed-hardwood half of the trail.


A hike must include some climbing for it to not be too boring for the kids. 

Meadow was still really bored and ruining it for me. Ugh.

We found a beautiful display of Chicken in the Woods mushrooms.

Look a them pines!

Theo for scale. 

We didn't get to see the pine plantation, but I'm sure we'll be back someday.

On our way to Bete Grise Beach we passed Haven Falls. When we visited in winter we couldn't tell where the waterfall was. Now I see why.  

I was expecting to run out and take a photo quick but the kids wanted to see it too. 

Here's what it looks like in winter. Impressive that it got that large when frozen.

Of course we needed to get a swim in. Supposedly the beach at Bete Grise Bay has singing sands. Not sure what that means. 

With the start of Labor Day weekend the beach was busy. However, only a few people were actually in the water. 


What are you two going to do without daily beach excursions?
 
I'm definitely going to miss this. 


Theo stuck to playing in the sand this time. 

More like, again. This kid prefers the shore.

After the beach we weren't quite ready for dinner so we stopped for a drink and games at Brickside Brewery

I had to capture a photo of Theo's beautiful curls. 

Best beers of the whole trip.

By now the town was filling up with mountain bikers for the Copper Harbor Trails Fest. 

Surprised we were able to get a place to stay with this bike festival going on.

One of us likes posing for photos. 

Our buyers agent on the duplex grew up in Copper Harbor and her parents own this restaurant and resort.

So we had to stop by for a meal.

Good food and the kids meals are incredibly reasonable. Thanks, Lydia.

This time we did not get tempted to drive to Miami.

We walked around town to kill some time.

Of course if there's a playground in sight the kids will follow. 


Wish we had a bike rack like that. Our next car definitely needs a hitch. 

Next we did the Brockway Mountain drive. 

Theo loved the views, Meadow stayed in the car. I'm sure this place is amazing in fall too.


We also learned a bit more about the Copper Country.


We assumed these people were waiting to watch the sunset but later I heard the Northern Lights were really amazing. 

I made a wicked fire, but as usual, the family just wanted to go back inside.
 
I'm too antsy to just sit by a fire. 

I collected all this wood for, what? Ah, well.

Meadow decided to stay up late and paint cards for everyone.

Day 15

Meadow left a few paintings behind too.

We decided before we drove to the cottage to check out the Delaware Mine across the street from the cabin. It's a self guided tour and we were the first ones to go in. 

Meadow was already unsure about going in. 

They were so nervous. Then we spotted a bat here and there.

A bat flew over my head once and Brooke freaked out. Which made Meadow freak out. Suffice it to say we didn't last much longer down here.
 
While walking back out we warned everyone coming in that there were a lot of bats. Everyone seemed unphased. 

Once out of the mine we explored the abandoned buildings on site. 

I guess we learned that Meadow is deathly afraid of bats.

One more tourist stop at the snowfall record. 

We made another stop in Calumet so Meadow could finish her Junior Ranger book. 

 I walked around the mining company grounds that now house different National Park activities, but aren't open to the public.

Back at the visitors center Meadow got a badge and a patch!

We couldn't leave without the kids playing again. 

See you later Calumet and the Keweenaw.

Then we decided to stop for lunch in Houghton. 

Next time we're up here we need to spend more time in Houghton and Hancock. We got lunch, picked up some goodies for the cottage and made our way to Wisconsin.

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