Viewing posts about County Road 550.

Gold Mine Hills near Birch Creek

Bare sloppy woods and distant hills

Way back in the early years of Marquette's iron years there were other metals that people hunted for, silver and gold and more. There were traces of these precious materials found in creeks and veins throughout the Huron Mountains. One of the more promising finds was along Birch Creek. These…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted May 8, 2014
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Around Echo Lake

Sign for Echo Lake

My Saturn Ion shot through the late-summer woods along a narrow two-track. The road to Echo Lake Nature Preserve, a walk that had taken my tired legs hours to walk last winter, was an easy drive for my little sedan. There were a few mud puddles, a few splashes to cake the sides of the car, and then…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted December 6, 2013
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Hills of Harlow Lake

South from the first outcropping

An unseasonable warm gripped the Marquette area. I stepped out of my car in short sleeves and looked around curiously at the snow drifts piled up against the woods. I was parked just north of Sugarloaf Mountain at an old gravel pit. There were no signs marking anything special here but I was one of…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted March 29, 2013
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Snowy Trudge to Echo Lake

Lots of traffic to Echo Lake

There's something to be said about a good ol' stumble-of-a-trudge, the type of hike when your legs begin to complain about bending properly and you refuse to stop for a break in the fear that your legs will rebel against you. When the weather and the terrain and the distance all conspire against…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted March 4, 2013
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Eastern Alder Hill

First view of the southeast Alder Hill

County Roads 550 and 510 stretch northwest from Marquette, roughly parallel and never more than five miles apart, eventually meeting near Big Bay. Between the two roads lie a number of public and private peaks of the Huron Mountains. There are a few that spill out of the road's embracing circle, but…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted May 10, 2012
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Wetmore Hike Part D - Wetmore Pond

First view of Wetmore Pond from the grade

The wide path down Hogsback Mountain led me back to the railroad grade a short distance south of where I left it earlier. While the path continued ahead of me something of interest drew my attention to the right. The large, swampy Wetmore Pond stretched out to me along the railroad grade, luring me…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 23, 2011
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Wetmore Hike Part C - Hogsback Mountain

Two bridges along the Harlow trail

The sound of crashing waves slowly died away as I headed inland away from Wetmore Beach. Taking the parking lot route out to County Road 550, I was unsure of how I would make it to Hogsback Mountain until I noticed a small two-track across the road from Wetmore's parking lot. It was marked as part…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 20, 2011
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Wetmore Hike Part B - Wetmore Beach

Waves crashing on the rocky shoreline

After climbing Sugarloaf Mountain, just a few miles north of Marquette, I headed down the eastern flank towards Lake Superior. With Wetmore Beach to the north and Partridge Bay to the south I stepped out of the cold, soaked woods and was greeted by an amazing view of waves pounding against huge,…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 15, 2011
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Wetmore Hike Part A - Sugarloaf Mountain

Looking north towards Wetmore Beach from Sugarloaf

Just a few miles north of Marquette is a small collection of interesting locations that I had ignored for far too long. Casting them to the bottom of my list as 'easy tourist' stops, I've driven past the Wetmore area to more appealing remote locations beyond Big Bay numerous times. I rolled into the…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 12, 2011
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