Hooked on Travelling

Tahquamenon Falls State Park — A Scenic Escape

The Upper Tahquamenon Falls

Tahquamenon Falls State Park promises to be the perfect escape from the work-a-day world for nature lovers and outdoors enthusiasts throughout the year.  Located in Paradise, Michigan, this nearly 50,000 acre expanse of wooded areas, rolling hills, and majestic waterfalls stretches over 13 miles—enough nature to explore and find something new on each day of your visit.  This area is what inspired famed poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “The Song of Hiawatha,” in which Hiawatha built his canoe “by the rushing Tahquamenaw.”

Tahquamenon Falls State Park - Ojibwe Indians

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Long before European settlers arrived, the Tahquamenon Falls area was home to the Ojibwa Indians, who lived on the rich flora and fauna along the shores of the rushing waters of the Tahquamenaw River, and fished the waters that teemed with an abundance of trout, and lived off of the land that provided a variety of wildlife and vegetation.

Tahquamenon Falls State Park - Pond

Photo courtesy of Michigandnr.com

The Upper Tahquamenon Falls is the centerpiece of Tahquamenon Falls State Park, and attracts thousands of visitors every year.  It’s one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi (second only to Crabtree Falls in northern Virginia).  One notable feature of the Falls is the distinctive amber color of the water, which is produced by the tannins leached the hemlock, spruce, and cedar trees that populate the swamps drained by the river.

Hiking

Tahquamenon Falls State Park - Hiking

Photo courtesy of Tahquamenon Scenic Byway

Hikers and nature enthusiasts of all levels can enjoy the 25 miles of hiking trails.  A perfect daytime section-hiking outing might consist of hiking the winding paths of the trailhead four-mile-long Tahquamenon River Trail that spans between the Upper and Lower Falls.  On this trail, hikers will experience the awe-inspiring beauty of this scenic gem and imagine how the Ojibwa, and later, the settlers must have felt as they hiked along the stunning shores of the Tahquamenon River.  Shutterbugs may want to take their cameras along to photograph the variety of the rich wildlife including:  deer, fox, coyotes, black bears, otters, porcupines, and mink—in addition to a host of various waterfowl and songbirds.

Fishing

Tahquamenon Falls State Park - Fishing

Photo courtesy of Tahquamenon Scenic Byway

The Upper Tahquamenon River is just the place to spend a relaxing day communing with nature, while fishing for trout.  The remote tranquility of this brook trout stream that meanders through the canopy of mature coniferous woodlands offers the ideal setting for a relaxing afternoon of angling.

Tahquamenon Falls Camping

tahquamenon camping

Photo courtesy of Michigan Miles

When planning a camping trip, campers can choose to totally “rough it” in a variety of locations that are off the beaten path, or camp in one of the two campgrounds that provide all of the necessary amenities for “modern-day” campers, who like to keep one foot in civilization:  The Lower Falls Campground and the Rivermouth Unit, each with 90 sites that have modern-day amenities such as electricity, picnic tables, flush toilets, and hot showers.

No matter the season, Tahquamenon Falls State Park offers year-round enjoyment of nature’s beauty and relaxation for a weekend getaway or an extended retreat.

 

 

Video courtesy of The Weather Channel

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