This stop is marked by its superlatives and firsts.
The superlatives are more impressive so we’ll look at those first. We visited the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore park, recently voted Good Morning America’s Most Beautiful Place in America.
We didn’t touch but a fraction of what the park has to offer. And it is beautiful, no doubt. But - as proud as we are that a place from our home state won the designation - we’re not sure if we completely agree with it. We get asked quite a bit what our favorite place has been and it’s impossible to answer that as the US has so many places that are beautiful but yet are so vastly different from each other.
Another superlative from the week was visiting the Worlds Largest Cherry Pie Pan in Traverse City, MI. This region is well-known for its cherry crops so it’s no surprise that the record holder is in town. The bigger surprise was how run-down the signage was by the pie plate.
Personally I want to create another superlative - best marketing/branding campain for a geographical region in a state for the local https://m22online.com/ campaign. By focusing on a local scenic highway that connects many towns and positive aspects of the area they’ve managed to land on an icon that people have gotten behind. We’ve seen the bumper stickers, t-shirts and hats on many people in all places in Michigan.
And the firsts?
How about- first time getting the truck stuck?
On our way to Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore we kept driving by all these seasonal roads/two tracks.
And I’m thinking…I have a truck. Bigger tires. Posi. They’re two-tracks. Why not? (The Jeeper in me lives on).
I saw one on the GPS that was just 1/2 mile loop off the road we were on so when it came up I hopped on it.
Down a sandy stretch, a few low-hanging limbs but nothing serious.
Small intersection coming up..slight uphill.
The truck loses momentum and the rear end starts wheel-hopping something awful as it digs in.
Back up..try a different line..same thing.
Wife has the beginnings of “that look” on her face..and tells me there is no cell coverage. Daughter asks “is this the national park?” Son declares “time to air down”.
Air down we did..our tires were still at 80 PSI for towing.
At 40 PSI the tires start to squat so I left them there. I still couldn’t make it up the direction we were going but could back up and go around a different way (after a couple of attempts).
Back up to the main road, stopped and used the our on-board air compressor to air the tires back up.
I’m really disappointed with what it took to stop the truck - so far any situation with possible poor traction I’ve had the trailer on it hasn’t slipped a tire. Unloaded? Not so much.
So technically we weren’t “stuck” - but it still took an embarrassingly-small hill to keep us from just driving though.
No more pretending the truck is a Jeep.