22 Astonishing Michigan’s Scenic Byways for your Next Adventure

We were amazed to discover that Michigan has 22 scenic byways. These routes can be found from urban Detroit to the Keweenaw Peninsula in the U.P. These adventures can be part of any vacation itinerary.


Travel and tourism is a major industry in Michigan. According to Travel Michigan, in 2017, Michigan played host to over 122 million who spent $24.7 billion. As a result, there has been a focus on creating scenic designation travel routes that tourists can experience while getting to their final destination. We were amazed to discover that Michigan has 22 scenic byways. These routes can be found from urban Detroit to the Keweenaw Peninsula in the U.P. These adventures can be part of any vacation itinerary.

National Scenic Byways – All American Roads

The United States Department of Transportation selects a National Scenic Byway, a road recognized with six “intrinsic qualities”: cultural, historical, natural, recreational, scenic, and archeological. The list was authorized by Congress in 1991 to preserve and protect the nation’s scenic but often less-traveled roads and promote tourism and economic development.

The most scenic byways are chosen to be All-American Roads, which must satisfy two of the six intrinsic qualities. The classification means they have peculiarities that do not exist elsewhere in the United States and are different and valuable enough to be tourist destinations unto themselves.

Of the 120 National Scenic Byways and 31 All-American Roads Michigan has 3 routes with this national designation.

#1 Woodward Avenue


This is considered “Detroit’s Main Street,” Woodward Avenue follows, in part, the route of a Native American Saginaw Trail from Detroit to Pontiac. The route is packed with historical remnants of Detroit’s automotive heritage and interesting and historical ethnic neighborhoods, historic homes, and landmarks. It’s also home to the yearly Woodward Dream Cruise. The Dream Cruise extends from Pontiac to Detroit and is held each August.

#2 Copper Country Trail

Copper Country

This picturesque route highlights Michigan’s history and early boom years associated with copper mining, the Copper Country Trail National Byway follows US-41 which sits on top of the copper vein that lies deep underground. It ends at the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula. Copper Harbor is the jumping-off point for visitors traveling by ferry to Michigan’s only National Park; Isle Royale. This is also one of our favorite Michigan road trips.

#3 River Road

River Road

Located just north of Tawas, this 22-mile scenic byway extends westward from the shore of Lake Huron inland to the Huron-Manistee National Forests, paralleling the historic Riviere aux Sable, which is French for “River of Sand.”

National Forest Scenic Byways

The National Forest Scenic Byways are roads that have been selected by the U.S. Forest Service as scenic byways. The program was started in 1987.

#5 Whitefish Bay National Forest Byway

Stretching west of Sault St Marie, this 27 mile, one hour drive travels through historic sites and picturesque views that stretch along the Lake Superior shore through the hardwoods, conifers, and wetlands of the Hiawatha National Forest.

#6 Black River National Forest

Located in the Western Upper Peninsula, the Black River area was officially dedicated as a National Forest Scenic Byway in 1992 to recognize its exceptional natural beauty and recreational possibilities.

Michigan State Scenic Byways

Fortunately for those looking for a scenic Michigan road trip, there are many, many options. Here are some designated Michigan Byways from the Michigan Department of Transportation.

#7 M-22 Byway


This was the first state highway in Leelanau, Benzie, and Manistee counties and was built in 1913. The route was nicknamed “Going Round the Horn” has it looped from Manistee County to Traverse City via the famously over window stickered M-22. This drive offers year-round scenery, a rural atmosphere, and numerous events and activities each season.

#8 Old Mission Peninsula

Old Mission

This wine country drive meanders out into Lake Michigan’s Grand Traverse Bay; M-37 is the peninsula’s main route, running a northern course between the bay and beautiful scenery from vineyards, orchards farms. The following hills give travelers magnificent views. Numerous wine tours can be found and arranged from Traverse City year around.

#9 Tunnel of Trees

Tunnel of Trees

This ancient route and trail follow the Lake Michigan shoreline from Harbor Springs to Cross Village. In the Fall, the highway bursts into color with its canopy of trees, and natural beauty can be enjoyed during the leisurely drive.

#10 Tahquamenon


This 90 minute, 60-mile journey through Michigan’s eastern Upper Peninsula, the Tahquamenon region is one of the more remote of the byways in Michigan. However, travelers are rewarded with access to two of the most sought out destinations in the state; Tahquamenon Falls and the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum.

#11 US-2 Top of the Lake Scenic Byway

Top of the Lake US-2

Just across the Mackinac Bridge, St. Ignace greets traveling visitors as they head into the Upper Peninsula. Heading west, US-2 follows close along the picturesque shoreline of Lake Michigan’s northern edge. This area is also known as the “banana belt” of Michigan’s UP as Lake Michigan tends to moderate temperature along US-2.

Michigan’s State Recreation Byways

Michigan Byways offer a flavor of all the beauty and variety of the Great Lakes State. The exceptional natural beauty and historic, scenic, recreational, and cultural significance have earned these drives to be considered among the top travel destinations.

#12 Sunrise Coast

Sunrise Coast

This byway consists of over 200 miles of clear inland lakes, majestic Lake Huron, numerous shipwrecks, historical, and sometimes spooky, lighthouses, and pristine beaches on what is considered Michigan’s Sunrise side. This is the longest of the states byway routes. It is recommended for taking several days to enjoy.

#13 I-69 Recreational


Running from the Indiana border north past Battle Creek, this heavily traveled route requires travelers to venture off the highway to appreciate this beautiful historic region; you’ll find opportunities for unlimited year-round outdoor activities. For Movie Drive-In buffs, the Capri Drive-In Theater is on nearby Chicago Road.

#14 Pathway to Family Fun M-15 Ortonville Road


This old-school drive is considered a less hectic alternative to I-75, taking travelers through a relaxed winding corridor known for its quaint towns, local parks, recreation, and camping areas. Starting in Clarkson and heading up the byway on M-15 runs north and northwest to Bay City. This is a great alternative route during busy holidays.

#15 Hidden Coast

Hidden Coast

Meandering through the wilderness between the Wisconsin border at Menominee and Gladstone along Lake Michigan’s northwestern shore, large parts of the old Native American Sault and Green Bay Trail, this “Hidden Coast” is drenched in history and heritage. The highlight being at the end at the Sand Point Lighthouse

#16 Chief Noonday


M-179, also known as Chief Noonday Road, winds east through a land of recreational opportunities and historical significance. Located South of Grand Rapids, this area is heavily wooded and inhabited by an abundant variety of wildlife. Nearby to the Yankee Springs Recreational Area and the Barry State Game Area.

#17 North Huron Recreational Trail

North Huron

Starting just east of St. Ignace. This 50-mile excursion along the northern shore of Lake Huron, M-134, is rich with wildlife habitat, scenic views, boating, and recreational opportunities. This is also considered a prime cruising area for sailors on the Great Lakes.

#18 West Michigan Pike

West Michigan

Explore the sugar sand beaches, majestic dunes, quaint communities, beach towns, and resorts along the 184-mile West Michigan Pike, one of the nation’s oldest “tourist” roads. Festivals and events, historic places, and Michigan-made foods, beverages, and art keep travelers from the Lake Michigan shore on the “Pike” each year.

State Historic Byways

Michigan Historical Byways are specifically designated and state routes with particular significance. The original name of this project was the Michigan Heritage Route Program that was created in 1993. These byways are used to recognize, protect, and enhance the area. In many cases, adjacent land is denoted with unique scenic, cultural, or historic qualities.

#18 US-12 Heritage Trail

US-12 Heritage Trail

This Michigan road trip is cut along the same route as the ancient Sauk Indian Trail. This route is rich in colorful character, remarkable history, and an ever-changing landscape. The US-12 Heritage Trail invites the traveler to journey its winding road, cruise through historic small towns, such as Marshal, with 19th-century architecture.

#19 Iron County Heritage Trail

Iron Country

Located in Iron County of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, the Iron County Heritage Trail is composed of a 36-mile loop connecting 14 premier sites that provide visitors the opportunity to discover the history behind the beauty of Iron County

#20 Marshall’s Territorial Road


Marshall’s Territorial Road features 28 historical markers, with 14 being official Michigan Historical Markers – the most of any Michigan community outside of Detroit. Marshall is the home of the famous Win Schulers Restaurant.

#21 Center Avenue/Bay City

Bay City

Bay City offers picturesque tree-lined streets with majestic lumber baron era mansions to a magnificently restored county building and business district. The entire city is a preservationist’s dream. The M-25 (Center Avenue) neighborhood has almost 900 historic structures in its Center Avenue Neighborhood Residential District. A great mini Michigan road trip.

#22 Monroe Street


Driving, walking, or cycling along M-125 (Monroe Street) provides visitors an unparalleled opportunity to enjoy a mix of residential, religious, and commercial landmarks and structures, as well as natural resources such as the historic River Raisin, known by Native Americans as “Numaseppee” or River of Sturgeon.

Excerpts and map thumbnail have been taken from Pure Michigan Byways and Tour Routes Driving Guide published by the Michigan Department of Transportation. Information for your own Michigan road trip can be found with its detailed information, maps and key things to see can be found on this downloadable pamphlet

33 Items to Include in Your Emergency Car Kit

Planning on taking a drive to visit some of the must-see sites in Michigan this winter? When it comes to safety on the road, we should all have an emergency kit in our cars. In order to decide what to put in your kit, you need to take into account the weather in your area (here in Michigan, we know it will often be cold and snowy!) and what items will suit your family’s needs.

Keep essential emergency items stowed

Planning on taking a drive to visit some of the must-see sites in Michigan’s Upper Thumb? When it comes to safety on the road, we should all have an emergency kit in our cars. To decide what to put in your kit, you need to consider the weather in your area (here in Michigan, we know it will often be cold and snowy!) and what items will suit your family’s needs.

Being Prepared for An Emergency

Your car emergency kit list should be divided into three separate areas. These include (1) items you keep accessible in your car, (2) emergency items for an auto breakdown—I keep these in the compartment with my spare tire, and (3) emergency items to take with you if you have to abandon your vehicle on the road. I suggest packing the third group of items in a backpack with multiple compartments to make it easy to carry.

Aside from your emergency kit, you should always travel with a fully-charged cell phone and keep a car charger in your vehicle at all times. If you don’t have a smartphone with GPS (or a GPS system integrated into your vehicle), consider buying a stand-alone unit. And, when you live in Michigan (or any other cold, snowy climate), make sure that you have snow tires (or chains) to put on your car in the autumn. 

11 Items to Keep Accessible for Any Emergency

  • Small tool kit. This can include a multi-bit screwdriver, scissors, pliers, box cutter, tape, and Allen wrench.
  • $50 or $100 in small bills, hidden in your center console. If you’re stuck and need food or a hotel room, this stash could be a lifesaver!
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Several bottles of water
  • Ice scraper and snow brush
  • Adhesive bandages and antibiotic cream
  • Flashlight with extra batteries or a hand-crank model
  • Umbrella and rain poncho
  • Extra medication if you have a medical condition and rely on prescriptions.
  • Extra hats, gloves, scarves, and earmuffs (or 180s)
  • Car safety hammer and seatbelt cutter. This item is one you’ll want to have within arm’s reach. Some models feature velcro straps for easy attachment.
Keep an ice scraper handy

11 Car Breakdown Items

  • Fire extinguisher
  • Three reflective warning triangles. Most kits come with one, but you should have three of them to place at 50-foot intervals to warn oncoming traffic.
  • Emergency flares
  • Foam tire sealant
  • Spare tire, tire iron, and jack
  • Jumper cables (the longer the better)
  • Tow strap rated to tow 6,000 pounds
  • 550 Paracord. It can be used for just about anything.
  • Assorted bungee cords. These are great for a loose bumper, muffler, or for tying your trunk down.
  • Shovel
  • Cat litter. If you’re stuck, cat litter works as well as sand to give you traction in icy conditions, but it’s much lighter.
  • Ice fishing supplies. If you get stuck near a lake in the winter, what better way to take your mind off the fact that you’re lost! (That’s a joke, although you certainly could bring them along if you’re so inclined.)
Be able to fix a flat tire

11 Items for A Mobile Emergency Kit

  • Hand crank flashlight with NOAA radio and USB port. This is a great multi-use tool that will allow you to hear emergency broadcasts, weather forecasts, and to charge your cell phone in the event that your car charger won’t work.
  • First aid kit and first aid manual
  • Duct tape. Astronauts take it into space as a multi-use tool, so you should take a roll on the road!
  • Multi-purpose tool
  • Space blankets. These are compact and lightweight, so you might as well pack a few.
  • Non-perishable snacks. I keep protein bars in my pack and check them every 6 months or so to see if they need to be replaced. The chocolate-coated ones are fine in cold weather months, but avoid having these in your car in the summer!
  • Waterproof matches/lighter/long burning emergency candles. These are staples in any emergency kit and can be used to start a fire, provide light, and even boil water.
  • Maps and a compass. Of course, you’ll need to know how to use them. There are a number of online tutorials available if you need to brush up on your map and compass skills. Here’s a quick tutorial on how to read a map, and one on how to use a compass.
  • Loud whistle or air-horn. These can act as a beacon to help emergency workers find you if you’re lost or injured. Keep several whistles on lanyards in your pack, one for every family member.
  • Glowsticks. Not only will these amuse the kids, but they can also help you to keep track of your family in low-light situations.
  • A pack of cards, travel-size games, or a paperback book. If you’re in a situation that you have to wait out, this can alleviate the boredom.

Specialty Items

These are things that you may need, depending on your family composition. If you have a baby, you might want to keep some extra diapers, diaper rash ointment, baby wipes, and canned or powdered formula stashed in your car. If you regularly travel with a family pet, have an extra leash, some sealed dog (or cat) food, and a collapsible pet bowl in your car. 

Be Prepared for Any Contingency

A well-stocked car will save you a lot of hassle down the road! You can learn more about preparing an emergency car kit tailored to your specific needs from the Department of Homeland Security and the DMV websites. We also have tips on getting your car ready for the winter.

4 Detroit and Michigan Food Trends to Keep an Eye On in 2021

Growing up just north of Detroit, I took for granted some of our great foods like Coney Island hot dogs, deep-dish Sicilian pizza, and the ethnic neighborhoods of Hamtramck, Greektown, Corktown, and Mexican village. Now they are a national treasure.

We took a look at the top three emerging food trends in that are expected to go beyond 2020.


Growing up just north of Detroit, I took for granted some of our great iconic foods like Coney Island hot dogs, deep-dish Sicilian pizza, and the ethnic neighborhoods of Hamtramck, Greektown, Corktown, and Mexican village. Now the Food Network had finally found us, and we are considered a national treasure for the foodie culture. Wait until they drive up Van Dyke and hit Gibbys Fries at the Huron Community Fair. Southeast Michigan and Detroit have become home to some of the most innovative dining in the midwest.

We took a look at the top three emerging food trends in that are expected to go beyond 2020.

#1 Vegetarian and Plant-Based Meat

Burger King’s Impossible Burger’s success notes that plant-based meat-like products are here to stay and only grow in options and tastiness. The trend is som stong that McDonald’s is introducing its Mc-Plant burgers shortly. But beyond the fast-food chains, even Detroit neighborhood bistros are exploring plant-based ingredients.

Chili Mustard Onions

Even in these trying times during the COVID pandemic, new restaurants are giving it a go. Detroit’s Chili Mustard Onions (AKA CMO) is a new player in 2020 and is going all-in with a vegetarian menu.

Chef Pete LaCombe selected and renovated its location at 3411 Brush Street in Detroit, just south of Mack Ave and DMC. The little restaurant is currently offering curbside pickup. Their menu highlights are the Southwest Detroit Nachos, CMO Big-Mock, CMO Coney Dogs, and the inventive Beetball Sub. We expect plant-based entrees and restaurants to be a major innovative food trend in 2021.

#2 The Dominance of Detroit Style Pizza

Sicilian or Detroit style pizza is a cheesy deep-dish square pie that is light on top-loaded sauce and filled with Wisconsin brick cheeses. The dough is prepared and baked in steel pans formerly used in auto plants for carrying parts. It renders a thick crust but light and not chewy.

In the Detroit area, folks have their favorites places for their Detroiter. Of course, the dominant chain is Buddy’s Pizza followed by Loui’s Pizza in Hazel Park and the Green Lantern Pizza in Madison Heights. However, Jet’s Pizza makes an absolutely perfect Detroit Style located in 390 locations in 18 states. Detroit Style Pizza will be on the list as a national food trend in 2021.

#3 Rise of Great Lakes Whitefish – Sustainable Aquaculture

Folks are reading the labels and studying where their food comes from. We are starting to see people weary of farm raised shrimp and fish. Especially from areas where is little to no oversight on what is fed and how it is processed.

Living in Michigan, we are fortunate to live in one of the world’s premier managed fisheries. With the delicious freshwater whitefish as the number one harvested fish in the Great Lakes. The remaining 13 fish companies operating in Michigan focus their efforts on sustainable practices for catching whitefish. The Bay Port Fish Company operates in Saginaw Bay and sells their catch in Detroit’s Eastern Market during the summer.

The variety of recipes and entrées that can be created with this fish is amazing. We found the Whitefish Chowder recipe as simple, savory, and rich in flavor. It’s expected that people will look to seafood sources that are close to home and sustainable. We expect whitefish to be on the list for one of the new food trends in 2021.

Detroit has been getting press as one of the best food cities in North America. National Geographic featured Detroit food trends as part of the 6 Unexpected Cities for the Food Lover. Detroit’s Corktown eateries were the only North American spot named globally. The late Anthony Bourdain loved some of Detroit’s hot spots and this visual tour of the food scene.

Detroit isn’t just a national treasure. It IS America. And wherever you may live, you wouldn’t be there — and wouldn’t be who you are in the same way — without Detroit.

Anthony Bourdain –

Fun in Port Austin – Tip of the Thumb

Amazing things to do in Port Austin. The tip of Michigan’s Thumb.


Most states in our country have small towns tucked away from the hustle and bustle of state capitals and big cities.  In Michigan’s greater Detroit area, Port Austin fits the bill.  This harbor town is two hours away from Detroit in a straight drive up M-53 to the tip of the Thumb of Michigan.

The State Docks Are A Sailors Domain

Port Austin is Close to Metro Detroit But with A Northern Michigan Feel

This budding artist colony nestled between farms and pasture land to its south and Lake Huron’s expanse to its north. As a result of this unique position, the town offers breathtaking sunrise and sunset views over the big lake.  With a small year-round population of just over 600, it’s a summer destination with cottage owners and weekend tourists seek the cool breezes of Lake Huron. At the same time, the parents take the kids out to enjoy the numerous sandy beaches throughout the area.

Boaters and cruising sailors carefully motor past the rocks and the iconic Port Austin Lighthouse to utilize the strategic port to stock up with groceries or make repairs before heading over to Canada’s Georgian Bay or the pristine waters of the North Channel.

Port Austin and Grindstone City are a Budding Artist Colony

Find Treasures at the Port Austin Farmers Market

This historic and unique town embraces visitors and its community with activities that allow everyone to get out and fellowship with one another, forming lasting bonds.  There is an “Art in The Park” event every Labor Day weekend, and the White Church Gallery is minutes away in Grindstone City.  During the summer months, the town holds a weekly farmers market full of fresh veggies and produce accompanied by arts and crafts.  No need to ask for directions as it’s located downtown, one block from the harbor.  This laid-back event is much anticipated by the locals and serves as both a marketplace and social gathering.

The newest event to hit the town has been the Porchfest. Here famous and not-so-famous music groups perform folk, country, jazz, and even a little rock. Participants stroll from house to house and take in each entertainer. The event is held each June, and we will update our readers with dates as the event gets closer.

Port Austin Is Great For Sea Kayaking

Turnip Rock is A Kayakers Easy Paddle

The outdoor enthusiast will find no shortage of things do or places to explore in Huron County.  Turnip Rock is at the foremost of many beautiful sites.  Only accessible by water, the 5-hour kayak round trip is the best way to experience this natural treasure.  The 2 hours heading out seem shortened by the anticipation of seeing something so marvelous, and the 2-hour paddle back allows ample time to explore the rocky shore let the experience sink in. If you’re a fisherman, the Port Austin harbor is home to several charter boats that specialize in finding the numerous Lake Trout, tasty Walleye, and Steelhead Salmon that are out in the big lake.

For those who like to enjoy their site-seeing underwater, Port Austin has an entire underwater park full of shipwrecks from the 19th century.  Scuba divers and snorkelers can be seen here daily in the summer months.  On the other hand, if you feel the need to stay dry and hit the links, head just south of town to Bird Creek Golf Club and test your skills at the “best greens in the Thumb.” If putting is more your style, Port Austin has several classic mini-golf attractions for the kids and the popular Sandy Dunes Adventure Golf, which claims the only waterfall in the Thumb. Horseback riding is available for kids age 8 and up at the Knoblock Riding Stables, and the stable offers Pony rides for the little ones.

The Tip Of The Thumb As A Foodie Destination

The Bank is a Port Austin Landmark

The Upper Thumb offers some of the finest home-cooked, and Great Lakes fare in the region. With over twenty restaurants, grills and pubs, there is a choice for just about every taste. Outstanding establishments include the epicureanism of The Farm Restaurant, the classic dishes of The Bank 1884 Food and Spirits, and breakfast at the Lighthouse Café. For those who like a sense of history, venture to the reopened Garfield Inn. James Garfield, the 20th President of the United States, did not build or own the landmark 1850’s Inn, but he was a rather frequent visitor. A few minutes from Port Austin in Grindstone City are the dueling ice cream shops of the Grindstone General Store and Rybak’s Ice Cream.

Enjoy A Wild Beach At The Site Of A Ghost Town

Map of the old Lumber Town of Port Crescent

If you like to enjoy the great outdoors, Port Crescent State Park is the perfect place.  Located on 640 acres with 3 miles of sugar sand beach, the park offers excellent scenery. Find the quiet by relaxing among the dunes and enjoy a good book.  The park is located on the site of an 1860’s lumber town that has long since faded away. Some remnants of the original town of Port Crescent are still seen in

Nearby Port Crescent State Park has a Huge Beach

the park such as the chimney base from the salt works and lumber mill. Much of the park literally resides on a ghost town. The park supports canoeing on the gentle Pinnebog River with rentals nearby. For those who want to venture on foot, there are seven miles of dunes and woods trails for hiking.  Other amenities include hunting, fishing, cross-country skiing, and birding. Port Crescent State Park has been designated as one qualified to be listed as Dark Sky Preserve. With little light pollution from nearby metro areas, this park is a haven for astronomers each summer.

Port Austin is Family Friendly

Crafts, Flowers and Fresh Food at the Huge Outdoor Farmers Market

Port Austin is an affordable resort town with a budding artist colony in a family-friendly atmosphere.  Visitors can find numerous places to stay in. Lodging is available on the waterfront overlooking the famous Broken Rocks, a favorite of kayakers. Or check out the cozy knotty pine cabins in town and near the shops. Couples can also experience the romantic and classic touches of several Bed & Breakfasts in town. Camping is also available at several commercial, county, and at Port Crescent State Park campgrounds. Port Austin is a place to call home or to spend a long weekend.

Survive Winter Camping with a Snow Shelter

A basic winter camping survival shelter can be made by hollowing out a big pile of snow that has been allowed to settle and harden.

They can take several hours to build, but are an effective way to stay warm when camping in the winter.

A quinzhee shelter is warmer than any four season tent.

Start with a big pile of snow

The day after Christmas yielded our first significant snowfall. About six inches fell overnight and blanketed the northern Detroit suburbs. We played host to four college-age young men and two senior high boys who were sick of playing video games. The evening’s chatter and talk were focused on the fun time when they were young and the winter camping snow shelters that they made hiking the Chief Pontiac Trail. It was to practice winter survival skills. As they got older, these shelters’ size grew, and sometimes they dragged sleeping bags and candles to spend the winter night. Later that evening, the older boys trooped out to the back yard and started mounding snow. It was dark and getting late, so I went off to bed while this group worked away in the snowstorm.

A True Winter Camping Survival Shelter

Dig Out Your Space

The next morning showed the results of their work. A ten-foot mound of snow was settling in the bright morning sun. It was an impressive sight. The boys built the start of a quinzhee. It’s a basic shelter made by hollowing out a big pile of snow that has been allowed to settle and harden. They can take several hours to build but are an effective way to stay warm when camping in the winter. A quinzhee shelter is warmer than any four season tent.

All the Comforts of Home When Winter Camping

Stay Dry, Vent Your Space

Evan, Peter, Matt, Tim, Ian, and Austin finished their winter survival shelter in the late afternoon. They ran power out to the snow dome quinzee for music, Christmas lights, and laptop access from the multitude of unsecured Wi-Fi networks in our neighborhood. They lined the base of the shelter with a tarp, then wool blankets and sleeping bags. It was comfortable and warm. The entrance was blocked with a couple of sleds.

Making a tunnel

The Scouting Magazine Boys Life offers a great outline of how to build a quinzhee winter survival shelter. It also features great outdoor skill articles and stories in each issue.

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5 Simple Winter Camping and Survival Tips

Tent in the Winter Snow

Besides building a simple quinzhee, there are a couple of easy tips to keep in mind when camping out in the winter months.

Layer Your Clothing – Start with at least three layers of clothing. You can help to regulate your body’s temperature by adding or removing different layers of clothing. Use wool or material that wicks moisture away from your body. Loosen or remove layers if you begin to sweat. Moisture will cause heat to radiate away from the body, eventually making you colder.

Take Care of Your Feet – There is nothing more miserable than cold, wet feet. Select cold weather boots that are comfortable and allow at least two layers of socks. Wair an inner liner sock that will wick moisture away. Wear thick wool or Smartwool sock for warmth. If your feet get wet because of sweat, loosen your boots and change your socks. Hunters have numerous ideas and hints for keeping your feet warm and dry in the winter. Check out How To Keep Feet Warm While Hunting (13+ Tips and Tricks) for some great ideas.

Drink Water – When hiking or skiing, it’s vitally important to keep hydrated. Don’t eat snow. Keep a Nalgene full of water next to your body to keep it warm. I have witnessed a man pass out from drinking ice-cold water as it hit is the vagus nerve. At night keep your insulated water bottle with you in your sleeping bag.

Bring a Supply of Pocket Warmers – Pocket warmers are excellent to have with you when sleeping in the snow. Toss one of two at the bottom of your sleeping back to keep your feet warm and toasty all through the night. I swear by them.

Sleep on Layers – Another overlooked winter survival tip is to sleep on layers. While it’s kind of heavy to hike with, having a wool blanket folded over a couple of times under your sleeping bag or on top of an air mattress in your snow shelter is worth its weight in gold. It acts as a comfortable insulator. A layer of leaves or pine boughs also works to keep you off the cold frozen ground.

Avoid Wearing Cotton – While cotton is comfortable when it gets wet, it stays wet. Invest in Smartwool undergarments and socks. I’ve personally used Smartwool during winter camping and found it’s best at keeping me feeling dry and warm.

Top 9 Best Foods Which Made Michigan Famous

Michigan is famous for serving some of the best foods in the Midwest region of the USA. No trip to Michigan can be complete without trying out some of the famous foods in the area.

We review the top nine foods in the Great Lake State.


Known for its beautiful lakes and beautiful sights, Michigan is also famous for serving some of the best foods in the Midwest region of the USA. No trip to Michigan can be complete without trying out some of the famous foods in the area. Known for its comfort foods, the Mitten state is famous for re-creating regular dishes by adding a twist to it like the Detroit-style pizza and Coney Dog. Its home-grown foods like cherries and apples also make Michigan a tasty food destination.  

Here are the top nine best foods which made Michigan famous that you must try on your next visit to the Mitten state.  

1.Mackinac Island Fudge  

A trip to this small, car-free island is incomplete without treating yourself to the famous Mackinac Island fudge. The entire island is spotted with fudge confectioneries and the irresistible smell of chocolate wafting across the island makes it impossible to keep away from them. Most shops boast of flavors ranging from peanut butter and German chocolate to Michigan walnut chocolate and more. The famous fudge here has also inspired several ice-cream flavors. With this variety, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Make sure to carry your box of fudge back home for friends and family – check out resources like Foodsharkmarfa to find out how to keep your box of fudge fresh for longer.

2. The Coney Island Hot Dog 

Lafayette and American Coney Island in Detroit Michigan

If you’re visiting Detroit, don’t miss out on a delicious coney dog. The coney dog is Detroit’s twist on the hot dog. Made of a beef hot dog, slathered with chili and mustard, and finally topped with raw onions, a coney dog is best eaten with hands. The city has several coney dog shops that offer a variety of flavors; but, if you’re looking for some original coney dogs, try out the American Coney Island and Lafayette’s joints.  

3. Detroit Style Pizza  

This deep-dish pizza was started in the mid-1940s by Buddy’s pizza. The square-shaped pizza is made of double-stretched dough, lots of cheese, and topped with sauce. Though you can find them with a variety of toppings, the classic Detroit pizza is made with pepperoni that’s layered under the cheese and sauce.  Buddy’s Pizza is always highly ranked in national pizza surveys.

4. Tart Cherries 

Tart Cherry picking in Michigan.

Traverse City, Michigan, is known as the “cherry capital of the world.” There’s a national, week-long festival held every July to celebrate the cherry harvest that consists of events, carnival games, and, of course, cherry-filled foods. The state hosts many cherry farms that provide farm tours and tastings. You can find several cherry-based foods ranging from cherry barbeque sauce to cherry coffee to cherry hot sauce on these farms.  

5. Pasties 

One famous Michigan food is the Pasty. Pasties were created by the Cornish immigrant copper miners who bought this easy meat pie to Michigan. Today, it’s a staple Upper Peninsula food. Restaurants serve pasties with various fillings, but the most traditional fillings are meat fillings made of beef and potatoes, chicken, and pork. To make a meal of it, top it with gravy, and you’re set for a hearty, easy to carry meal. For the best pasties, visit Lawry’s pasty shop and try out their traditional meat-stuffed pasties.  

6. Frankenmuth Chicken  

Frankenmuth is a charming little town that’s known for Christmas and chicken. Also known as Little Bavaria, Frankenmuth boasts of the world’s largest Christmas store called Bonners, where you can shop for Christmas-related things throughout the year. Bavarian Inn and Zehnder’s are famous for their family-style meals that come with many sides. You can also pick up some delicious chicken seasoning here. 

7. Chipati 

This is a staple for the students of the University of Michigan. Chipati is a pita filled with a simple salad of lettuce, mushroom, and cheese, topped with a creamy, tangy sauce. Chipati was introduced by Pizza Bob’s in the 1970s and remains a popular go-to snack for the locals even today.  

8. Paczkis 

Paczki is a traditional Polish sweet often eaten on Fat Tuesday. Pronounced as punch-key, this popular Polish desert is a donut-shaped pastry filled with rosehip or stewed plum jam. It’s considered one of the most famous foods in Detroit Michigan. However, now you can find paczkis with several variations in fillings.  

9. Better Made Potato Chips  

Better Made potato chips can be found everywhere in Michigan. The locals prefer Better Made potato chips to any other brand. You can find them in various flavors like garlic, dill pickle, red hot, and sweet barbeque.  


When it comes to distinct food culture, Michigan has a lot to offer. From deep-dish pizzas to traditional Polish paczkis, the state is home to several diverse dishes that are celebrated for their uniqueness and flavor. Here, the various festivals and cultural nuances surrounding food offer visitors much more than a dining experience. These foods are an experience in itself that has made Michigan famous all over the world.  

Another top 10 Michigan Food List to Consider

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