Les Cheneaux Islands

First, let’s start with how to pronounce these beautiful islands that are about 30 miles north of Mackinac Island. It’s pronounced Lay-Shen-O. They are a grouping of about 36 islands, some inhabited but most are very rustic wilderness and unspoiled natural beauty. It is in the northern most portion of Lake Huron in the upper peninsula of Michigan. This is as far north in our travels as we will go without the Canadian border being open to proceed further north in this area.

On the morning of July 12th we departed Mackinac Island and headed the 13 nm to Marquette Island and dropped our anchor in Wilderness Bay. Here are some of the photos from our approach into Wilderness Bay. There was this one compound/house? Not sure what it was but it was large and sprawling.

Anchoring here was straightforward. Lots of room. Good holding in mud and very peaceful Once we anchored, we were the only boat to be seen for miles. No one here. No internet. No cell service. Here’s Mark and I with the anchor down, getting the Mantus anchor bridle in place.

Our entertainment at anchor was the large eagles nest that had an adolescent eagle in it. Mom and offspring would be out flying and hunting. You could hear the young eagle crying for mom occasionally. It was like, “Hey, are you going to come back and feed me? It’s getting dark you know”. Spent a lot of time watching the nest and waiting to get some good photos. I think my patience paid off. Here is the nest with just the telephoto lens.

Here’s the same photo, zoomed in a bit:

I never got a photo of mom, but she was huge compared to the young one.

We also spent our time doing a bit of boat cleaning that Camille was extremely helpful with and pitched right in. We cleaned all the port hole windows, applied metal wax, applied silicon grease to the gaskets and cleaned all the screens. Had a nice relaxing dinner aboard and of course played some Mexican train.

The sunset this evening was particularly spectacular. The sunset’s and sunrise’s have been particularly colorful due to wildfires in Canada.

The next day, we woke up to the peace and serenity that being alone at anchor affords. We knew we had some rain showers coming this morning and it rained for several hours starting mid-morning and into early afternoon. It wasn’t a storm front but a long passing shower. We spent the day inventorying the pantry to see what groceries we have used in the last month and what things we now need from the grocery store.

Mark also had time to make Camille a paracord bracelet as a bit of a birthday gift.

We made Walnut Shrimp for dinner. A dish that the 3 of us enjoy when we are together.

Then we had a bit of a sing along to the Eagles (no not the birds, the musical group). Mark and I broke out our guitar and uke to try to play along. Camille didn’t jump overboard at our attempt.

We played some more Mexican train and then just as we were about to head to bed. I peeked my head out in the cockpit one last time hoping to see the stars. As I entered the cockpit, I called below. “Woah! You guys have to see this!” We were enveloped in fog! You literally could not see past the confines of the cockpit and could not see the bow of the boat. We had the hatches open in the main area of the boat and we noticed that the fog started to fall through the hatch opening as if someone placed a fog machine right there. It was cool, creepy, awesome and weird all at the same time. Too bad you can’t really capture a photo of what this was like.

The next morning the fog had cleared to a beautiful sunny day with increasing winds. Today we would leave our secluded anchorage and head back to St Ignace as Camille will be departing us the next day to head home.

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