Riding the Mitt’s Left Coast

Laying in the hotel room last night at Niles, Michigan I was hoping that my untested saddlebags were somewhat water proof. It really poured down and we went to sleep to the sounds of thunder and lightning. I am trying out a new GPS tracker on this trip and got an alert that said the bike had been tilted. During a heavy storm (including tornado watches) that can be disconcerting. I ran downstairs and all was well. Maybe that tracker is a little too sensitive.

(For all my motorcycle friends – the Hampton Inn at Niles, Michigan was the first hotel I’ve ever travelled to that would not let us park our bikes under the portico. How disappointing.)

This morning the radar showed that the storms had cleared out of the area and we should have clear sailing up the west coast of Michigan (the Mitt). The roads were damp, the skies were overcast but we were happy to be dry. We rolled out of the motel around 7:30 looking for gas and breakfast. We found both in South Haven, Michigan. We ate breakfast downtown in a very touristy area. The food was good at the Phoenix Street Cafe.

The next target was in a city I spent some time in when I was a lot younger. We had family in Muskegon, Michigan and that’s where we were headed. The city has changed a lot since I was last there and I didn’t recognize much. Spencer is a big history buff and enjoys learning about WWII. There is a war era submarine on display in Muskegon that was high on his list of things to see. I can tell you that if you are in the area and enjoy military history, you should definitly plan a visit to the USS Silversides Museum.

Captain Spencer at the helm.

One thing about travelling with my son is that you never know what kind of things are going to show up on the waypoints along the route. We both have a fondness for the “world’s biggest” or the “world’s only” so how could we pass up the chance to see the world’s largest weather vane.

All that was left to do today was to put the last 30 miles behind us and find our way to Ludington. Unfortunately, it was necessary to break out the rainsuits. The radar still showed clear skies but the eyeballs said the mist looked a lot like rain. Did I mention that I hate wearing this rubber suit?

Tonight we’re staying in an old downtown hotel in Ludington. The Stearn’s Hotel is a quite a change from the chain hotels we’ve been in so far. It doesn’t have a lot of amenities but does have a lot of character.

Across the street from the Stearn’s is the old Mason County Courthouse. I really liked the way it looked and it is certainly well cared for.

Dinner was at one of the places suggested by the clerk at the hotel – the Jamesport Brewing Company. The food was good, the service was good, and the company was excellent.

Today’s mileage was abut 192 which puts the trip total at around 350.

Tomorrow, we are temporarily leaving Michigan – one if by land, two if by sea. Wish us luck.

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