Munising & Alger County
Virtual brochure and information for Munising & Alger County, one of many online travel brochures for tourist information in Munising, MI. Provided by your source for Mackinaw Information and Mackinac Information.
Munising Visitors Bureau
Waterfalls & Lighthouses
Your guide to the Good Life.
Laughing Whitefish Falls
Following a 20-minute hike downhill, this spectacular 100-foot drop waterfall is worth the walk. With its deep gorge and layered limestone, the water flows over the rock with grace and lands in a small pool at the base.
Directions - Located within Alger County, visit this incredible flow of water just a couple miles north of Sundell and M-94. Follow Sundell Drive until it turns to gravel, go 1/4 mile then turn right at sign. Drive about a 1/2 mile to the parking area.
If traveling west on M-28, Alger Falls is located on the east side of M-28 just before the Munising city limits. Eastbound travelers will be able to see them on the left side of M-28 right after leaving Munising as they head up Westmore Hill, just before the turn for M-94.
Rock River Falls
This 20-foot cascading waterfall is one of the most beautiful, secluded waterfalls in Alger County. The falls are approximately 1.5 miles round-trip from the parking area.
Directions - These falls are located off of M-67 just northwest of the town of Chatham.
This gentle waterfall is best viewed in the early spring and slows to a trickle at the height of summer. The small stream falls about 10 feet into a pool of sand and small pebbles.
Directions - Eastbound travelers will find Scott Falls just south of M-28 immediately past the MDOT rest area approximately one mile east of the turn to AuTrain.
The Wagner Creek cascades over rock ledges in this area before emptying into the Anna River, creating a beautiful scenic spot. There is a small walk back to the falls on a well-groomed path.
Directions - Located south of Munising on M-94, just past the junction of M-94 and M-28. You will see a sign on the east side of the road.
A trail through the woods will lead you to either the base or the top of this beautiful 30-foot waterfall. The undercut rock walls on either side of the falls allow you to walk behind the falling water for a unique perspective. Since you approach the falls from the top of the canyon, use extreme care.
Directions - Located north of Munising, follow H-58 until you reach Nestor St. and then take a right. Drive about a block until you see the signs.
Walk the paved .25-mile trail up the cool shaded sandstone canyon along Munising Creek to the base of the falls. Two sets of stairs lead to platforms to view the 50-foot waterfall as it drops over a sandstone cliff. Watch for ferns, wildflowers, and an occasional mink. The trail is full accessible to the central falls viewing platform. Please stay on the paved trail. Pets are permitted on the trail to Munising Falls.
Directions - Located within the city limits of Munising where Washington Street becomes Sand Point Road, near Munising Memorial Hospital. The Munising Falls interpretive Center is at the beginning of the trail to the waterfalls. Munising Falls is located within the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.
A gravel path through the northwoods leads to two overlooks. Enjoy the Miners Falls Nature Trail and views of the Miners Basin along the way. The Miners River drops about 50-feet over a sandstone outcrop, creating this gorgeous waterfall. There are 77-steps down to the lower viewing platform at the falls. This is an especially beautiful trail in the springtime with abundant wildflowers. Pets are not permitted on the trail to Miners Falls, but are allowed in the parking lot and picnic area.
Directions - Located about five miles north of Alger County Road H-58 off Miners Castle Road. The hike from the parking area to the waterfall is 1.2 miles round-trip.
After a brisk 1.5-mile walk past abundant stands of jewel weed, hikers can view the 60-foot high Chapel Falls as it cascades toward Chapel Lake. The trail is on an old roadbed with several small hills. Two viewing platforms along the way provide views of the scenic Chapel Basin. The trail contineues to Chapel Rock and Lake Superior. Pets are prohibited on all trails in the Chapel area.
Directions - Located about 15 miles east of Munising off Alger county Road H-58, then about 5 miles north to the end of Chapel Road.
This remote waterfall is best viewed from the water though it may be seen from along the North Country Trail. Spray Falls plunges about 70 feet over the Pictured Rocks cliffs directly into Lake Superior. The 1856 shipwreck “Superior” lies at the base of the falls in 20 feet of water.
Directions - Located about 1.75 miles northeast of Chapel Beach
Bridalveil Falls are only viewable by water or from a distance at Miners Castle. The falls cannot be seen from atop or from the North Country National Scenic Trail. This is a seasonal waterfall that slows to a trickle in the summer and fall. Bridalveil Falls is often featured on postcards and publications about Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.
Directions - Located about a half-mile northeast of Miners Beach along the Pictured Rocks cliffs.
Walking toward Mosquito Beach, a side trail leads .9 miles to the falls, which drops over an 8-foot high rock shelf on the Mosquito River. Watch for river otter and beaver in the stream. This is a lovely springtime trail through the forest carpeted with wildflowers. Pets are prohibited on all trails in the Mosquito area.
Directions - Located about 15 miles east of Munising off Alger County Road H-58, then about 5 miles north to the parking area at end of Chapel Road.
Sable Falls tumbles 75 feet over several cliffs of Munising and Jacobsville sandstone formations on its way to Lake Superior. The first viewing platform is down a staircase with 169 steps. The hike from the parking area to this staircase steps is short. The trial continues past the falls and down the canyon. It is about a half-mile to the beach at Sable Creek as it winds its way to Lake Superior. Pets ar not permitted on the Sable Falls trails, but are allowed in the parking lot and picnic area.
Directions - Located about one mile west of Grand Marais on Alger County Road H-58.
Grand Island Harbor Range Light
Also known as Bay Furnace Range Light, the lights were first lit in August, 1868. The front light was originally a wooden structure with a fixed Sixth Order Fresnel. The rear light was positioned on a short tower on top of a wood frame keepers dwelling. In 1914 the structures were rebuilt. Of interest to real lighthouse buffs, the original structure is a private residence located at 701 Superior Street in Munising, having been moved there in 1920. By the late 1930’s the Fresnel lenses were removed and replaced by 350mm glass lenses. In 1968 the front range was replaced with the existing structure, a design peculiar to the Great Lakes.
Directions - Grand Island Harbor Range Light is just east of Christmas near the waterfront with the rear light standing 500 feet to the south.
Grand Island North Lighthouse
Originally established as a necessary addition to the maritime commerce on Lake Superior by Congress in 1853, construction took place in 1856. The lighthouse was torn down and rebuilt entirely in 1867. Built on a 175-foot sheer cliff, the light was visible at a distance of nearly 13 miles in clear weather. The structure was last used as a lighthouse in 1941 with the installation of automated navigational aid installed by the Coast Guard. Grand Island North Lighthouse is located on private property at the northern top of Grand Island and cannot be viewed from land. Because of its cliff top location it also cannot be viewed from the water and can only be viewed from an aircraft.
Grand Island East Channel Lighthouse
Although a mere shadow of its original glory, the Grand Island Harbor Light is one of the most photographed lights on the Great Lakes. Because the structure sits on Grand Island and is on private property, the only way to see the structure today is from Lake Superior. Thousands of tourists taking the Pictured Rocks Boat Cruises or Shipwreck Tours, out of Munising, pass in front of the structure every year and most visitors cannot resist taking a photo of the venerable structure. The lighthouse was in use from August 1868 through October 1908 until being replaced by the Munising Range Light.
Munising Range Light
The 1908 Munising Range Light is managed by Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and is used for offices by the Science and Natural Resources staff. The range light consists of two small lighthouses. The rear range light is found on the hillside, inland from the front light. As ships approach Munising Harbor, their course is correct when the two lights line up. The keeper’s dwelling is identical to the Grand Marais Harbor of Refuge keeper’s quarters, also constructed in 1908.
Directions - Located in the city of Munising, the main Munising Range Light is on M-28 west of downtown. Parking is very limited at the site, so public visitation is not encouraged.
Au Sable Light Station
Constructed in 1874, the Au Sable Light Station continues to warn mariners of the dangerous Au Sable sandstone reef that extends one mile into Lake Superior. The remote station is managed by Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and is open for interpretive tours in July and August.
Directions - Access to the lighthouse is 12 miles west of Grand Marais via Alger County Road H-58. From the lower Hurricane River Campground a 1.5 miles (one way) hiking trail lead to the station which is listed on the National Register of Historical Places.
Sand Point Beach
Named one of the top five U.S. beaches in 2007, Sand Point juts out into Munising Bay providing ample room for beach goers. A product of currents between the east and west channel around Grand Island. Sand Point is an interesting geomorphological feature. Watch fore tiny pink/purple grains of Garnet and black Magnetite that wash up on the shore.
Nestled along an old Glacial Lake Nipissing shoreline, Miners extends for 3/4 mile of Lake Superior. To the west, the caves below Miners Castle are interesting for paddlers and boaters. Watch for rip currents in this area. Like today’s visitors, people have enjoyed this beach for over 3,000 years. The Miners area was named by early English explorers, searching Lake Superior for merchantable ores.
Ripple marks, rain drops and mud cracks in sandstone mark portions of Mosquito Beach. This beautiful sand and bedrock beach is the destination for kayakers and hikers. The Mosquito River ripples into Lake Superior where anglers search for wary steelhead trout. Access to Mosquito is via a 1.7-mile trail from the Chapel Trailhead.
A 3.3-mile hike from the Chapel Trailhead leads to Chapel Rock and Beach. Chapel Rock was carved by ancient Glacial Lake Nipissing, over 5,000 years ago. A long white pine lives atop this remote landmark, name by early explorers.
Beginning in the Beaver Lake area, a long strand of white sand beach extends past Au Sable Light Station to Grand Marais. Twelvemile beach is known for countless hours of looking at pebbles and stones washed up by glaciers and Lake Superior waves action. Look for Agates, Horn Coral, Epidote, Jasper and other pebbles. Remember that these beautiful rocks must remain on the beach when you leave.
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