Last Friday Susan and I went back to Mackinac Island with our bikes. There are lots of bikes over there already and many folks bring them over or rent them. Bike rentals are about $9-$12/hr. More expensive than renting a car. It costs $10 for the ferry ride for your bike. No matter what, they are going to get your money.
The night before a 1986 Bluebird Wanderlodge pulled in next to us. Nice folks from southern Michigan. This was a 38′ coach that weighed 43,000 lbs. Our 36′ coach weighs about 31,000 lbs. the Wanderlodges are tanks. It was powered by a 8 cylinder Detroit Diesel 2 stroke engine. It sounded pretty cool.
The 10 AM ferry ride over to Mackinac took a detour out to the Mighty Mac Bridge. We didn’t know that, just our luck. The bridge is huge close up.
And a motorhome going across looks tiny.
The speed limit for trucks is 20 mph and cars 45.
We worked our way from the ferry docks to the west because it was the shortest way out of the town area. The 8.3 mile road around the island is Michigan State Highway 185. It follows the shore and is mostly pretty flat. It is the only state highway in the US where cars are not permitted. Two lanes, all of the appropriate paint lines, all you have to do is avoid the frequent road apples.
It seemed like 80% of the bike riders went the other way for some reason. But the horse drawn carriages went both ways. You can rent a drive-it-yourself horse carriage as these were or you can rent horses to ride on top of. We didn’t check those prices.
Most of the road is like this, through over-arching trees, partly shady and quite nice. It was a pretty easy ride with lots of places to stop. There are some houses along the way side. About half way there is a rest area with an ice cream shop and bathrooms and lots of bikes.
And the “Waste Management” truck.
A bit further on there was another ferry dock. A service ferry was there with two large dumpsters full of horse manure. Wheew!
We stopped for a break about 3/4 the way around and then continued on to a bed and breakfast we had stayed at several years ago. There was a small cafe behind the B&B. Good food, no crowds, quiet.
A couple of small tubs out in the back.
Then we went to the Great Turtle Toys shop (eventually found it after going up and down the street few times) looking or kites. I found one that Iiked to add to my collection (of two). Then on to a small park to wait for the next ferry. A young boy asked me about my new kite, where I got it, how do you fly them, do they come with string, 20 questions sort-of-thing. The kite store people were at the other end of the park and I suggested he go see what they were doing. He did and they let him help get a big kite up in the air. He was a pretty excited kid. Mom and Dad and Gramma and Grandpa were there at the next picnic table. They though it was amazing that he came and talked to me (or anyone, they said) and pleased that I took the time to talk to him. It was fun.
Windy and wavy ride home. Not too tired or sore. Bikes did well. Us too. Slept like bricks.
Roger and Susan.