Saturday, September 28, 2013

Taking the Backroads - Shoreline Trail, Muskegon

I always think when I am out on my Friday Creative Inspiration adventures that I am not getting enough "good" pictures to make a very interesting blog post. Even when I get home and load them into Lightroom and start culling them, I still think there isn't enough "good" ones. I can put that thought away now as I exported 32 pictures from Lightroom this morning. I guess there are more tthan enough that are good enough. Don't worry I won't share all 32, otherwise this post will go on forever, and that's just not my style.

Starting Point
My starting point this week was the Shoreline Trail which is a driving route that runs along the Lake Michigan shore in Muskegon County.

I have been on bits of this trail on my last two Creative Inspiration Fridays, but decided I would start at the beginning this week, instead of in the middle.

At the beginning of this trail is this lovely ice cream shoppe. Too bad it wasn't at the end of my day instead, or maybe it is just as well it wasn't.

Mount Garfield Motorcycle Club
About fifteen minutes into my trip along this trail I spotted this...

I had to do what is becoming my classic turn around and go back maneuver. It was just too intriguing to not check out. As I passed I thought it was some kind of sledding hill or something winter related but no, it is a Motorcycle Hill Climb.

In 1919 Dan D. Raymond opened the Raymond Motor & Cycle Company on Ottawa Street in Muskegon. Raymond organized the Muskegon Motorcycle Club in 1920 and in 1921 leased a nearby sand dune, Mount Garfield, for a motorcycle hill climb.
The Muskegon Motorcycle Club purchased the forty-acre site that included Mount Garfield in 1923, the same year that over 3,000 spectators attended the climb. The club also purchased a farmhouse, which was converted into a clubhouse and improved the hill with wooden steps, an observation tower, and clay surfacing.
The Muskegon Motorcycle Club received the National Championship Hill Climb award from theAmerican Motorcycle Association (AMA) in 1929. Though the Great Depression curtailed participation in the popular climb, by 1939 the AMA once again decided to hold a national hill climb event at Mount Garfield. For the event, a concrete staircase with the name of a sponsor etched in each of the three hundred and thirteen stair slabs was installed. Mount Garfield is the site of the first professional hill climb in America. The climb was suspended during World War II but was resumed in 1946. A stone monument to the members of the Muskegon Motorcycle Club that died in World War II was erected at the entrance of the Mount Garfield grounds in 1949. 
The Muskegon Motorcycle Club still hosts the National Hill Climb Competition held at Mt Garfield every other August on even numberd years. The next National Hill Climb is scheduled for 2014.
You have to watch this video it is insane...

Here are some more photos of the outside, this place is like a fortress...

I was so happy with how the light was hitting this fence, it pays to start early in the day.

There are so many beautiful parks along this wonderful Shoreline Trail. I spotted this one as I was driving along, so I stopped for a little exploring.

It is the Lake Harbor Park in Norton Shores. Super cute little park with a walk along Mona Lake.

Lovely benches to sit upon and watch the water and the boats going past.

This is my favorite photo of the day. It isn't technically great, I realized after he was past that it was a dog in the front of the boat. This one tugs at my heart strings. This guy and his dog out for a spin on the lake. Does it get any better than that?

Snack Time
I remembered my water bottle and my snack this week. Yay me!!

So I sat on this lovely bench at Norman F. Kruse Park, a City of Muskegon Park enjoying my snack and the view.

Ending the day with Lunch
I finished up my day of exploring with lunch at Muskegon State Park. I found this lovely picnic table along the channel and enjoyed my Wendy's chili and drink, while reading about Michigan History. I know I am a geek :)

My view of the channel from my picnic table.

Some Thoughts From the Road

  • There is a definite shortage of cute sandwich/healthy take out places located anywhere near these lovely parks with picnic tables.
  • Next week if the weather is nice I think I will pack my own lunch. I am not a fan of having to get fast food. 
  • Remember to take the Paisley Rain Boots. This time of year the grass is dewy in the morning and I would prefer to not have wet feet so early in the day.
  • It is sad to see the snow fences going up already along the beach. It points all too clearly to winter. I want to enjoy Autumn first.
I am sure in the next couple of weeks we will really start to see some Autumn color emerging. I am looking forward to sharing that with all of you.

Joining Helen for Weekend Walks
Joining Kim for Friday Finds


  1. Thanks for taking me on your walk I love the way the wooden steps go down to the beach. You need a Thermos flask full of hot tea that would be perfect...

  2. Looks like a wonderful day, well spent. My husband and I drove to Muskegon on one of our many trips to Saugatuck, but didn't find this lovely place.

  3. OK, I never would have guessed that rusty No Trespassing sign guarded a motorcycle club's hill climb. And you're right, that video was insane! Great set of pics - I really enjoyed going along on your Friday adventure.

  4. Great set of photos, the light on the fence is perfect. Lovely textures in the wood. Good idea to take a packed lunch next time, I usually take something and my thermos of tea!

  5. Greetings from Greenville! We are here on the west side of the state for a family reunion of sorts. Yesterday we spent the day in Sagatuck and Grand Haven walking around, enjoying the beautiful autumn day. Today we return home. Love taking your day trips with you via your blog.

  6. Gosh, so many favorite shots! The motorcycle thing brings back some memories. Won't go there right now. But that was crazy. If I had to pick, maybe the fifth from the last. You really make me want to come to Michigan.

  7. That video made me guffaw - kept wondering what was about to happen and then VROOM! Up (and off) he went. Insane indeed!

    I was struck by that photo of the man and his dog in the boat - the reflection on the water, the two of them together...lovely.

  8. That sounds like a great creative adventure! Love your beach photos! I know those "doh!" turnaround moments all too well. See something and your past it...gotta make a U-ey!

  9. you are good, you always get out and do so much! I love all your shots. Thank you so much for your kind thoughts and message on my blog, I really appreciated it.

  10. Love reading of your adventures. The bench photo and the boat photo my faves this week.

  11. You are developing a unique vision. How you see the world, what catches your eye. You make me want to pick up my big camera and go hunt down 'the ordinary.'


  12. I'm loving your Friday adventures, and you got some great shots! The motorcycle club looks serious about no trespassing, but I do love that rusty sign! I think my favorites are the pretty bench with the water in the background and the walkway leading towards the water! Nice job, Sarah!

  13. Isn't it amazing what you run across on excursions close to home? Love the bench shot and all that beautiful water. I enjoyed another look at Michigan!

  14. oh wow, it looks like you got some beautiful photos! i take "wednesday adventures" just like you take your friday adventures. it does us good to get out and see the world, doesn't it?

  15. In my book this would be a perfect day. I long for days like this. Beautiful images. And that motorcycle club would have really intrigued me.

  16. You were right next to ME . . . I go on these same photo treats alone. Such beauty in the world. Gorgeous photos . . .see you in a bit!

  17. You may like your photo of the man in his boat best; but I like the morning rust-and-barbwire shots most. I grew up in Wisconsin. Your shots of Lake Michigan make me homesick.

  18. Well I'm stuck for choice on a favourite. I think the man in the boat would love the photo hanging large on his wall! The video is indeed insane ... why would choose to do that?!! Snow fences by the shoreline sound intriguing - I hope to see some very snowy photos later in the year! Thanks for linking to my blog - you've captured the spirit of what I hoped for.


Thank you so much for visiting today and taking the time to read my thoughts on life. :)