17 March 2019

Four States Fall 2018 - 12 - The Game

On the way back we stopped in the little village of Land O'Lakes, Wisconsin, just inside the border. We were looking to wet our whistles. We had a choice of two bars--one in a bowling alley or a questionable (from the outside) joint. We chose the questionable Brew's Pub Inc and it was absolutely the right choice.

Inside was a sports fan's dream. Jerseys, ads, photos with autographs, bats, balls, bobble-heads, banners, you name it. Every square inch full of sports memorabilia.

Tables were thick polyurethane over sports trading cards. The owner's mom serviced our table and she said the really valuable cards are locked up in the safe.
 Here's T&N.

So here's the situation. We drop by this bar and it's in Wisconsin and the Detroit Lions are playing football against the Green Bay (WI) Packers. And the Lions are winning (a miracle in itself). Drinks are flowing. (Check out this Bloody Mary...bonus hot dog as garnish!!)
Every patron except us is cursing and booing the game because Green Bay is losing. Well, we really did not want to say too much on behalf of the Lions, but inside Mike and I were reeling with glee. T&N (from Chicago) are Bears fans, so they weren't saying much one way or the other.

One really fun thing was every time the Packers scored, the bar served a complimentary "Green Bay" cocktail to every patron.
The final score was Packers 23 - Lions 31, but we got out of there alive (tsk tsk!) Just kidding! It was a really fun bar and we would definitely go back.

Dinner that night was at Riverstone. Good food, but a looooooooog wait to be seated even though it was not crowded at all. Only one couple in front of us (they waited also) and lots of open tables. Weird!
 Loved this cranberry quilt that hung in the bar.
My pasta was good. Tim even had a taste.
On the way back to the lodge, we saw this lovely panorama.

The next morning we headed toward our respective homes. We spotted this nice up north kind of farewell as we turned onto the main road.
T&N went south. We drove north back through the U.P. to get to our place...avoiding Chicago at all costs. It was sunny along the northern Lake Michigan shore, but as we approached the Mighty Mac bridge it turned foggy and rainy.
Although the drive was uneventful, it took 10 hours and 571 miles to get back to Kalamazoo and Bella. She was happy to see us and we were happy to see her. Here she is on Mike's lap watching TV.

16 March 2019

Four States Fall 2018 - 11 - A Surprise Back in Michigan

The next morning we did a repeat breakfast at Leif's (because it was so good the first time around).

T&N had a little surprise day trip planned for us. About 50 miles north and back into Michigan is Bond Falls waterfall. We had never heard of it!!!

We have been to Tahquamenon Falls in the eastern side of the upper peninsula many times, but did not realize there are actually six waterfalls of note in the U.P.  Besides Tahquamenon in the east, there is Munising, Miners and Wagner in mid-peninsula, and Bond and Agate on the west end. We certainly will have to do more exploring of all these falls in the future.

Tehquamenon features an upper and lower falls area. It is 50 feet at its widest, with a 50 foot total drop. It is sometimes call Rootbeer Falls because of its unique golden-brown color. This is caused by tannins from nearby cedar swamps that drain into the upstream river.

Bond Falls is found along the Ontonagon River. There is parking near the top and bottom of this falls. We started at the bottom.

The falls tumbles over fractured rock formations, dividing it into numerous small cascades. It is also a 50 foot total drop, although it seems longer. The crest is so wide (100+ feet) that is was hard to get it all in one photo. Here are some shots from various spots. Just gorgeous!

There are many fabulous viewing spots, including two bridges which cross the river at the bottom of the falls.

There is a trail that runs along side the falls from bottom to top. Here's a good view of one bridge as you head up.

People were enjoying the sights and rushing sounds along the way, and taking lots of photos.

At the top of the falls is the Bond Flowage, which is created by two dams. It was constructed to store water for the Victoria Hydro-Electric Station 20 miles to the north. There is camping and picnic areas around the lake and numerous walking trails. On this map, the falls is upper left.

The lake is on the other side of this high berm, but we didn't get that far.
And, of course, there was the ever present gift and refreshment shop. We bought some sweets to share and headed back south to Eagle River.

This was a most impressive waterfall for size and beauty. And definitely worth a stop, even if we had to back track our route about 50 miles each way.

14 March 2019

Four States Fall 2018 - 10 - Cranberry Shopping

Back at the reception area we met Miss Wisconsin (and two runners-up...haha!)

There were two shopping areas. First was the gift shop with many cranberry delights and accessories.

Then there was a temporary tent filled with food products for the tasting.

As well as fresh cranberries, there was jam, jelly, salsa, wine, dried cranberries in wild rice, infused jerky, and more. Also, fresh honey made from cranberry blossoms.
We tried a few wines, some mixed with other berries, but too sweet for me.

We made a few purchases and moved back toward town.
On the way back it began to snow in earnest. Along the way we looked for one of the famous Wisconsin supper clubs for dinner that night. We came across Williams's as a good possibility, but an employee advised it was temporarily closed because of a death in the owner's family. We'll try this one next time.

Mike spotted this Huey Cobra mounted along side the road. It was Vietnam's first dedicated gunship. Although Mike flew crew on Chinooks, it was fun for him to see this helicopter.
Next stop, the actual festival.

Mostly shopping there with a wide variety of cranberry products, crafts, Christmas items, fishing tackle, etc. Get your coon skin hat here!

It was cold and wet, so we did not linger long. We took a quick sweep through the small downtown.
There was a knife store and Mike bought a new one for his collection. It is a "legal" switchblade type!?
There was an old bank converted to a gift shop. The vault was impressive.
It was cold and wet and we were over-shopped at that point. We opted for a brief respite back at the lodge. I had a hot bath to warm up and then out to dinner. We chose another supper club type restaurant that T&N had dined at in the past called Eddie B's White Spruce.
Had to sit in the bar a bit to wait for a table and all be darned if they didn't have a large copper nugget hanging on the wall as decor.
Not near as big as the one we hunted the day before, but pretty darn big and "spruced"up a bit.
Here's the guys and the lake view.
And the woodsy furniture.
Food was decent overall. Here's some samples...