August 7th, 2009 @ 21:49:08 | Share your thoughts!
After leaving the South beach at Little Presque Isle and driving out through the parking lot I happened to become curious as to why there were other cars around – yet I hadn’t seen anyone else down on the beach. Strange… Driving out from the entrance to the parking area I stopped my car and peered through the pines toward a small group of people I could see walking with lawn chairs. Using my common sense* I reasoned that there was not only another beach just through the trees, but that it was better than the one I had just been to. I put the car in park, grabbed my towel & beach ball, and grew excited for what I would find.Turns out, the excitement was justified.
*Common sense – I include a disclaimer for common sense because I disagree with the meaning for which we apply it – which is the meaning I imply here. Perhaps a later and unrelated post will explain my thoughts…
As I said before, Little Presque Isle is commonly referred to as “The Crown Jewel of Lake Superior.” I can see why someone would say this, though I hesitate to say its the only jewel you’ll find along Lake Superior. More appropriately, I would say this beach is significantly rich in beauty – on par with many of the other extra-special beaches along the lake-shore. According to the MI DNR website, Little Presque Isle includes 430 acres of Natural Area, and 8.6 acres of Wilderness Area (the island). The area is heavily timbered with hiking trails (including North Country Trail) and nearby camping. The 430 acre natural area is a mixture of wooded dunes and swales formed by receding glacial lake levels. The shoreline is diverse, with stretches of bedrock (some very rare granitic formations), beach-sand, boulders, and cliffs which reach nearly 60 feet in height to the South. The island is less than 100 meters from shore, and can be reached by wading through the shallow water. Historians suggest the island was used as a landing site by early settlers and natives. The beach on the North side is a beautiful sandy beach with a small river (Harlow River) emptying into the bay. It is beautiful, and that’s no exaggeration. In all, the Little Presque Isle stretch of shoreline is roughly 4 miles long. Surely, this beach is a local treasure. There was certainly nothing reluctant about my steps toward the water on this beach. I dubbed this “Some Beach” because that’s precisely how I felt about it. It was some beach!
So how do you get here? Northwest of Marquette on CR-550 a mere 4 or 6 miles. Can’t miss it.