Maggie, Snow (our cat), and I headed northwest out of the Washington area on afternoon of Thursday, the 17th of April. Our trip was planned to take 2 weeks, with major stops in Michigan, Minnesota, Colorado and Kentucky. The intent was to pick up our new trailer in Minnesota, then visit Erik in Colorado before heading back east.

visitor center
We drove the van up through the Cumberland Gap and stopped at the visitor center where they had many displays of the area's geology and animals. That night we stayed at a Day's Inn located in Frostburg, MD. The first part of our route was arranged so that we stayed in motels that accepted pets.

The next morning was foggy as we drove on back roads through such memorable towns as "Elk Lick", Maryland until we found the Pennsylvania turnpike. Later that day our journey followed the Ohio turnpike where we passed wavy brick wall painted in very patriotic colors.

brick flag
We continued up into Michigan to Canton where our next motel was booked. After checking in Maggie manned the laptop while I drove, following the GPS program to Maggie's brother's house. Jim was working, so we spent a few hours with his wife Katie and daughter Elly. Katie drove us over to where Jim was working, and we talked for an hour or so before returning to the Day's Inn. On the way back we spotted a White Castle hamburger stand and had to get a midnight snack, as we don't have these where we live in Virginia.

Saturday morning was a foggy one again and we were headed north towards the Upper Peninsula. I had seen on the map that there was a 6-mile long bridge, the Mackinac, which connected the 2 parts of the state.

Hours later Maggie was driving as we approached the bridge, me with my camera in hand. Unfortunately you could barely see 500' because of the fog and the view was, well, nondescript. Maybe next trip...
foggy bridge

Making landfall on the UP, as they call it there, we followed route 2 along the shore of Lake Michigan. It was here that we began to see the unusual animal statues, such as the "Five moose of different colors" series, as I call it and a running deer nearly 20' long.

RWB moose
royal moose
veggie moose
tux moose

There were a lot of places advertising “Fresh Pasties” along the road, but we didn't’ know what they were talking about. Our stop for the night was in Escanaba, MI, at another Day’s Inn. After checking in I asked the girls behind the desk what was the popular snack was called “Paisties”? When they stopped giggling they corrected my pronunciation and explained that they were a type of meat pie. The motel had a pool so we were glad that we brought our swimsuits. Supper was a pizza delivered to the room, living it up like the Rockefellers!

foto ace