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wal1
I am looking for suggestions for a 5-7 day camping trip in the Midwest. We have two daughters ages 5 & 8.

We live in the center of MN along the border of MN & SD.

We have been to the following locations and have enjoyed every one of them.
* Black Hills of SD
* Wisconsin Dells
* Duluth to Grand Portage to Iron Range to Itasca S.P.
* Jellystone in Sioux Falls, SD
* Kamp Dels in Waterville, MN
* Wiley Park in Aberdeen, SD

I'm just looking for something new. We'd like a location with historical or natural attractions as well as activities kids would enjoy that would be under a 12-14 hour drive.

Thank you!
Jerry S
Hi wal1,

From your post, I get the impression that you want to drive to one location, stay there and enjoy the RV park and sights and attractions nearby.

The first area I thought of was St. Ignace/Mackinaw City, Michigan. The Mackinac Bridge connects the two towns, Macinac Island is a boat ride away, the Soo Locks are an hour north and Petoskym MI is an hour south. There are also numerous sights (Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, Keweenaw Penninsula, Picture Rocks National Lakeshore, Tahquanomen Falls, ect.) on the Upper Penninsula of Michigan that you will be near if you travel east on US 2 from Duluth. Personally, I would stop for a day (near Marqutte, MI, for example) to see some of the above sights on the way to or from St. Ignace/Mackinaw City.

Another thought would be Door County, WI. I haven't been there for years but many folks love it.



wal1
First, thank you for taking the time to post a response. I greatly appreciate your input.

QUOTE(Jerry S. @ Jan 27 2011, 10:52 PM) *

From your post, I get the impression that you want to drive to one location, stay there and enjoy the RV park and sights and attractions nearby.


Yes, for the most part. We don't mind stopping and looking at sights while enroute though.

QUOTE(Jerry S. @ Jan 27 2011, 10:52 PM) *

The first area I thought of was St. Ignace/Mackinaw City, Michigan. The Mackinac Bridge connects the two towns, Macinac Island is a boat ride away, the Soo Locks are an hour north and Petoskym MI is an hour south. There are also numerous sights (Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, Keweenaw Penninsula, Picture Rocks National Lakeshore, Tahquanomen Falls, ect.) on the Upper Penninsula of Michigan that you will be near if you travel east on US 2 from Duluth. Personally, I would stop for a day (near Marqutte, MI, for example) to see some of the above sights on the way to or from St. Ignace/Mackinaw City.


I visited Mackinaw Island once before a little over 10 years ago. My memory of it is that there wasn't much to do but shop. Shopping is not even on my short list of things I want to do on vacation so that area hasn't appealed to me much. Do I have the wrong impression?

The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, Keweenaw Penninsula, Picture Rocks National Lakeshore, Tahquanomen Falls, ect. all sound interesting though... My only concern is that last year we went to the North Shore of MN (Duluth to Grand Portage to Iron Range to Itasca S.P.) and I'm wondering if it will be too similar.

We are leaning towards Yellowstone but I'm looking for additional possibilities we may be overlooking.



Jerry S
Hi again,

It has been a while since I've been on Mac. Isle also and I am also not into shopping. I remember an enjoyable horse carriage tour of the island and a visit to the Grand Hotel as the high points of the visit to the island. Mac. City has Colonial Michilimackinac (a fort and settlement re-creation) and I seem to remember an old ship that is a museum. As I mentioned, the Soo Locks are only an hour to north and have a 3 hour boat tour.

While there are some similarities between the North Shore trip from Duluth to Grand Portage (I've done that trip twice) and going along the Lake Superior shore of the UP and northern WI, the UP trip has some things the North Shore doesn't. In addition to the stops I mentioned previously, there is also Porcupine Mountain SP at the western end of the UP. The North Shore has no equivalent of the Pictured Rocks boat tour or Tahquanomen Falls.

Then again, if Yellowstone is one of your options, go to Yellowstone.
Jerry S
Me again,

Since no one else has chimed in on this topic, I thought I would add a little bit to my previous post.

I just wanted to be sure that if you do decide to do Yellowstone for your trip that you are aware of how long it will take you to get there. Since you have already been the the Black Hills, SD, you already know how long it takes to get there from where you live. No matter which route you take from Rapid City to YNP, it is going to take 8-10 hours. Any way you look at it, you are going to be exceding 12-14 hour limit you mentioned in your original post by 5-10 hours. That means a 2 day drive to get to YNP and 2 days to get home - with no time for extra stops or delays enroute.

If you have only a week, that makes for a tight schedule. Once in the YNP area (depending on where you stay) you will also be doing alot of driving daily just to see the various highlights (Old Faithfull, Yellowstone Canyon, Falls, and Lake, etc.). Because the distances between these various sights and wherever you camp can be measured in hour(s), not minutes, you will be lucky to see 2-3 "sights" in any given day. On top of all that, I can't imagine not taking a day trip 50 miles south to see the Grand Tetons. 5 days is enough to do all (YNP & GTNP) of this, but it will be a really hectic 5 days with lots of driving.

There are alredy several "threads" on this forum concerning trips to YNP. You may wnat to check those out using the "search" function.
wal1
Thank you so much for your replies. We have decide to drive to Branson instead (without the camper) this summer. I'll keep Mackinaw in mind for next summer though! We will have to rethink Yellowstone and how to get there another year.
agcaldwell
QUOTE(wal1 @ Jan 26 2011, 10:30 AM) *

I am looking for suggestions for a 5-7 day camping trip in the Midwest. We have two daughters ages 5 & 8.

We live in the center of MN along the border of MN & SD.

We have been to the following locations and have enjoyed every one of them.
* Black Hills of SD
* Wisconsin Dells
* Duluth to Grand Portage to Iron Range to Itasca S.P.
* Jellystone in Sioux Falls, SD
* Kamp Dels in Waterville, MN
* Wiley Park in Aberdeen, SD

I'm just looking for something new. We'd like a location with historical or natural attractions as well as activities kids would enjoy that would be under a 12-14 hour drive.

Thank you!

Try the Dells, the girls will have plenty to do and if they are happy you will be.
Ag
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