Closing out the Summer

August 25, 2014

Untitled, photo by Jim Sorbie

Summer 2014 – get it before it’s gone!

View Jim’s photo of a sunset paddleboarder on Lake Michigan near Empire background bigtacular and see more in his Leelanau Scenes slideshow!

More sunsets and more summer wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures!

Is our summer out there?

February 23, 2013


090611_1186 by jsorbieus, photo by jsorbieus

Don’t get me wrong, I love winter, and we’re having a great one. Around this time I start to wonder when we’ll be able to walk out of winter and into warmer times.

Check Jim’s photo out background bigtacular, view it in his Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore slideshow and see more of Jim’s work on Michigan in Pictures.

Morning on Pearl Lake

May 15, 2012


DSC_5813, photo by jsorbieus

Today is the opening day of walleye season in Michigan. I couldn’t find a good walleye photo, but even though Pearl Lake isn’t on the list of top walleye lakes in Michigan, I thought it captured the mood perfectly! Much more at Michigan Walleye on Absolute Michigan.

Check this out background bigtacular and in Jim’s My Most Interesting Photos slideshow.

More fish & fishing on Michigan in Pictures.

The Lake in Winter

December 27, 2011


DSC_0136, photo by jsorbieus.

It changes every day, every hour. It is a thousand lakes, changing faces with every shift in wind and light – flurried by offshore wind, whitecapped in squalls, colored flannel gray or pearl-white or stormy black beneath the winter clouds, a dozen blues when the sky is blue.
~Jerry Dennis on Lake Michigan

Over on Absolute Michigan today we have an excerpt from The Windward Shore, the new book from Michigan outdoor writer Jerry Dennis. It’s titled The Lake in Winter and you should definitely take the time to read it!

Check this out background big and see more shots of the Lakeshore in winter in Jim’s slideshow.

More winter wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures!


110314_4339A, photo by jsorbieus.

One of the signs of spring in Michigan is when you see buckets on the maple trees. Jim writes that the first step to a delicious breakfast is real michigan maple syrup! Check it out bigger than a bucket and see more shots in his Syrup Slideshow!

For more about how syrup is made, check out The Cycle of Sweetness: From Sap to Maple Syrup. You can also read a little about how Native Americans made maple sugar on Michigan in Pictures.

As always, Absolute Michigan has more Michigan maple syrup features & links.


PA223507A, photo by jsorbieus.

As the leaves start to turn in Michigan, I see a steady uptick in the number of people who come to Michigan in Pictures after searching for “Fall” or “Autumn” or “Fall Wallpaper“.For all of you color seekers, I’m sending photo of early fall color from years past at Ransom Lake Natural Area in Benzie County.

You will also like our Michigan Fall Color Tours!

Check this out bigger and in Jim’s My Most Interesting Photos slideshow.


DSC_0021, photo by jsorbieus.

Won’t be long now!


DSC_6567, photo by jsorbieus.

Jim took this photo in Alberta, Michigan, an unincorporated community in L’Anse Township of Baraga County:

The community was originally founded in 1936 after Henry Ford declared the banks of the Plumbago Creek to be an ideal spot for a sawmill. Ford named the town “Alberta” after the daughter of one of his top executives, Edward G. Kingsford.

At the time Ford established Alberta, wood was used extensively in automobiles. Mr. Ford envisioned the town as a model sawmill community; consisting of twelve houses, two schools, and a steam driven mill built to the most modern standards of the day. The Plumbago Creek was dammed to provide a reservoir to serve the town and mill’s water supply needs. The mill was a two-story white clapboard wood frame structure and still stands, now housing a portion of the Alberta Village Museum. The saw mill had a capacity of 14,000 board feet per day for hardwood and 20,000 board feet per day for softwood. This was a small capacity even by 1936 standards, with Mr. Ford’s other three mills in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan producing twenty to twenty-five times as much.

In 1954, Ford Motor Company donated the town of Alberta, Michigan and 1700 acres of land to what is now the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science at Michigan Technological University.

Alberta buildings still standing on the property are used as a museum, support research and teaching programs for forestry and ecology majors, and are used by numerous universities from around the United States for forestry education.

Read more about The Ford Center from MTU.

Jim has a whole lot more big, background sized photos of fall’s glory in his U.P. set (slideshow). You can see more photos from the area on the Flickr map for Alberta.

More autumn wallpapery fresh in the Michigan in Picturesfall wallpaper collection!

Quincy Hill in Fall Colors 5 by KaylynStar

Quincy Hill in Fall Colors 5, photo by KaylynStar

Kaylyn has a number of colorful photos of Quincy Hill in the fall. As the northernmost point of Michigan, the Keweenaw Peninsula would probably have been the logical place to start color touring Michigan rather than where we did start (Western UP – Ironwood, Silver City, Wakefild, Porcupine Mountains).

In any case, the Keweenaw, way up north and surrounded by the icy waters of Lake Superior, is one of the first places in Michigan to be touched by autumn’s paintbrush.’s Color Tour of Houghton, Eagle River, Copper Harbor starts you in the city of Houghton at the Quincy Mine (photo: Quincy Mine & Hoist by Coder). Quincy Mine by CoderThe mine is open from May through late October and is part of the Keweenaw National Historical Park and offers guided tours of the old copper mine, the largest steam hoist ever built and a whole lot more mining history. There’s a museum on site and they also have a passenger cog rail tram that takes you to the top of Quincy Hill (where I assume you can get some great photos).

The tour heads north on M-41 to Phoenix where you can apparently tour the Church of the Assumption. The copper mining ghost towns of the Upper Peninsula page from Exploring the North has a brief bit on Phoenix:

Phoenix is located on highway 41 at the junction of M-26 to Eagle River. Once (about 1872) a thriving mining town of around 500 to 1000 people, but today there are only a few old buildings and the Phoenix Church remaining at the site of the old mine. St. Mary’s Church was built in 1858 to serve the Catholic residents of the mining community of Cliff, the scene of the area’s first major copper discovery in 1844. In 1899 the church was dismantled and reassembled in Phoenix, where it was renamed the Church of the Assumption. The Keweenaw County Historical Society has purchased and restored the property so the Phoenix Church appears much as it did over 100 years ago.

Eagle River Falls by Jim SorboeFrom there, it’s west to Eagle River, once an important port town for the copper industry and now a resort community. Attractions include the Eagle River Falls (photo: Eagle River Falls by Jim Sorbie) and the Eagle River Inn (they have some cool old photos on their site). Keep heading north and you’ll come to Jacob’s Falls and the Jampot, where the good monks of the Holy Transfiguration Skete make jams, jellies and pastries from all kinds of fruits including their famous thimbleberry jam. Stop car. Go in. Buy jam.

Eagle Harbor is next, and I can never mention Eagle Harbor without mentioning the first blog I ever saw, George’s Eagle Harbor Web. It’s also home to the Eagle Harbor Lighthouse and Museums (detailed info from Seeing the Light). Samuel of the Mountain by Kyle RokosNot far past here is Brockway Mountain Drive, the highest above sea-level drive between the Rockies and the Alleghenies. From the lookouts you can see glorious views of the town of Copper Harbor where you can see their photo gallery & webcam, Lake Fanny Hoe & Fort Wilkins State Park and the northern Keweenaw (photo: Samuel of the Mountain by Kyle Rokos). It’s probably time for a bite to eat too and them you can take a boat tour to the Copper Harbor Lighthouse if you’re feeling a little adventurous … or the ferry to Isle Royale if you’re feeling a lot adventurous!

It looks like the folks at Travel Michigan got a little tired at this point, tailing off with:

Continuing south of Copper Harbor is the authentic Delaware Mine, which yielded eight million pounds of the metal between 1847-1887. The scenic route continues through wonderful forests and through the city of Calumet, which was the cultural and commercial center of the Keweenaw Copper Range. Take time to visit the restored Calumet Theater and the red sandstone buildings of the downtown business district. This is the heart of the Keweenaw National Historic Park, which recognizes the importance of the mining history of this rugged and scenic region.

I’ve been in the Delaware Mine and I have to agree with who say “If you have time to visit only one attraction in the Keweenaw, make it Delaware Mine, the area’s premier tourist attraction, where copper was mined from 1847 – 1887.” It’s very, very cool.

If you’re curious as to what the color looks like right now, I’d say “pretty darn good!” A final reminder, be careful when driving those back roads!

Just so it’s clear, these fall color tour entries are produced by Absolute Michigan & Michigan in Pictures using the great information compiled in Travel Michigan’s Fall Color Tours as a starting point. We’re trying to add to what they’ve put together – not rip them off! As always, if you have links to information or photos that we missed, comments or reports, post them in the comments below!

Don’t miss our Michigan Fall Wallpaper series and see more of Travel Michigan’s Fall Color Tours.

Snow Day!

February 26, 2007


DSC_2282, photo by jsorbieus.

Much of Michigan (including these two horses) is socked in by a winter storm.

More photos by Jim Sorbie on Michigan in Pictures.

We will positively, for sure, I promise be starting our profile of Bobby Alcott tomorrow!


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