Marquette

We got up early on Saturday to motor-sail to Marquette, Michigan…but first, the anchor fouled on a tree and Chuck had to do some unwinding action with the chain, the lines, and the boat direction (I did the driving). The tree finally made its appearance on the top of the water – it was actually two trees with one root ball. The anchor was stuck between the two trees so we stabbed at it with our poles, moved the anchor up and down, and the anchor jiggled out of the grasp of the trees. Whew! Now to get the boat out of the tree’s way so it can’t do any harm.

The motor-sail was pretty non-eventful – it was overcast and the forecast for the day was big. By 3 p.m. there was to be 30 mph gusts from the North and overnight 11 foot waves. Our plan was to be tucked into Marquette before 3 p.m. at a marina to ride out the weather.

We passed the lighthouse below on top of a huge cliff on the trip over to Marquette. Loved the yellow color of it!

saturday light

When we were within striking distance of the Marquette breakwater, the wind started howling out of the North and the rain started. Of course. I’m thinking repeat of yesterday? We had to roll up the windows on the side of the boat to land at the marina and to get the lines/bumpers ready. I waited until we were inside the breakwater to walk around deck…Brrrr.

We landed safely and before we walked to the marina building we were greeted by Charlie Brontstein’s Mom, Dad, Sister, Nephew and Niece!  They all live in Marquette. We had a great chat and sent them home with a bottle of Cab.

charlie's family

We had a nice evening in Marquette – having a beer and some whitefish at the Verling and stopped at a crazy Mexican restaurant that had great food. We walked around in the rain and wind, did laundry, and took warm, long showers. The predicted wind and 11 foot waves did not happen – thanks weather service…and when we woke up, it was gorgeous out!

The photos below are taken on Sunday morning – the Presque Isle light, the Marquette ski area (for George Minns), and a great photo of La Rive Nord in the peaceful marina. The big thing on the right is used to fill iron ore ships in the day. Now they do it up the shore a few miles outside of town. We were told that the citizens of Marquette were tired of the train clogging traffic downtown while they unloaded iron ore.

Sunday was a marvelous day – we motored but there was sun and warm temps off the south shore. Chuck is checking Bonnie Dahl for our approach to the Portage channel before Houghton in the photo below. He also took a nap on the back deck using the cool, new blankie we got from Tom and Marie Saliture for Christmas. Thanks guys!!

We saw three lights after the Presque Isle, the decommissioned on in Big Bay that is now a B&B (it looked beautiful!), the light outside of the Portage channel on the right, and the breakwater light – middle.

We decided to anchor in the channel, before you hit Portage Lake. The side channel we went up, was beautiful. It had marsh and bogs on both sides and great views. On the way of the channel we passed this beautiful barn and the scary remains of an old scow. There were 6-10 foot “nails” still sticking straight up from holding the wooden hull together. We stayed away from that thing!

After we set the anchor line, Chuck went down to make dinner. I haven’t shown photos of the inside of the boat much – this is a shot of the galley where Chuck is making pasta using sausages from Usinger’s in Milwaukee. Yum. We had dinner and shared a great bottle of cab on the back deck watching the sunset. Chuck got a shot of me on the phone chatting with Luke who is staying with us this summer! I am looking forward to seeing that kid again!

This was probably the best anchorage of the trip for me – it was warm and sunny so we spent a lot of time outside. The sunset was amazing and the sounds coming from the marsh were even more amazing! So we decided to spend most of the next day hanging out in our little channel. I was able to read more of the Lake Superior history book we got from Stephen Murray, wash the decks down with our hose, and we did a puzzle while finishing listening to the new Christopher Moore book, Noir. When it was getting late, we made a late lunch and sailed away.

Tomorrow we think we’ll cross Lake Superior for Grand Marais, Minnesota if the wind is right! If not, we’ll be in Windigo on Isle Royale and cross on Wednesday.

 

 

 

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