birdwatchersdigest.com • SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER ’ 17 • BIRD WATCHER’S DIGEST 102
especially ducks. Near the town
of Saint Ignace, head for Straits
State Park and Bridgeview Park,
both in sight of the Mackinac
Bridge. Bridgeview Park is an
excellent place to use your scope
to scan for waterfowl. Expect to
see redheads, scaup, mergansers,
shovelers, and long-tailed and
ring-necked ducks. Winter brings
a great variety of species, often in
large numbers and close enough
for excellent photography.
From Bridgeview Park, follow the lakeshore road heading
west (Boulevard Drive and Point
Labarbe Road) and drive slowly
along the shoreline. Behind the
waist-high brush along the shoreline, you’ll find a marsh where
you might spot marsh wrens and
swamp sparrows, and hear or see
rails. Watch not only for waterfowl, but also gulls, terns, and an
occasional flyby of shorebirds.
Driving this lakeside stretch, you
may encounter members of the
If you go...
An online interactive map of the North Huron Birding Trail can be found at
northhuronbirding.com. Handy hard copies are available at the Michigan Welcome
Center in St. Ignace and the Sault Sainte Marie Visitors Bureau in The Soo (
sault-stemarie.com, 225 E. Portage Ave., 800-647-2858 or (906) 632-3366).
While you’re in Michigan, check out the Sunrise Coast Birding Trail from Mackinaw
City south to Tawas City, the site of a spring birding festival where fallouts occur. From
there, the Saginaw Bay Birding Trail stretches south to Bay City and north to the top
of Michigan’s thumb. In the northern UP, the Superior Birding Trail heads southwest
from Whitefish Point.
Sault Sainte Marie is the best home base for eastern UP exploration, with plenty
of motels and eateries. Along Portage Avenue, the
main commercial street, you’ll find the rather mod-
est Lockview Motel ( lockview.com) located directly
across from Soo Locks, only a few hundred yards
from Great Lake freighters.
For dining, Karl’s Cuisine ( karlscuisine.com) on
Portage Avenue is a good choice, featuring wall-
eye and whitefish as well as pasties (pronounced
“PASS-tees”), a UP Cornish specialty: a delicious flaky
pastry shell with meat, mashed potatoes, grilled
onions and veggies—among other things—inside.
Downtown Soo is crowded with taprooms and watering holes, but the unique
Bird’s Eye Outfitters and Superior Café (corner of Portage Avenue and Ashmun Street)
is a friendly spot, with high-end outdoor gear and bold local brews sharing the same
For an unusual gourmet dining experience, drive to the village of Hessel, 35
miles south of The Soo, for lunch or dinner at Les Cheneaux Culinary School
A UP pasty.