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Top 3 Glow-in-the-Dark Trips

See glowing plankton, mushrooms, and bugs on these brilliant adventures.
may 09 glow in the dark 445x260Fireflies in action (Judd Patterson)

Porcupine Mountains, MI
Link a path of glowing mushrooms.

Known as foxfire, bioluminescent fungi is found throughout temperate zones in wet, rotting bark. Scientists don’t know why some fungi glow and not others. One hypothesis: The glow attracts insects, and they spread the mushrooms’ spores. Bring a headlamp (with a red filter, if you have one, to preserve your night vision) and head north from the Pinkerton trailhead through old-growth conifers toward Lake Superior on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Look for soggy, downed trees on this 5.2-mile out-and-back, and agitate chunks of bark to oxidize the mushroom’s enzymes and reveal a light blue glow. (906) 885-5275; michigan.gov/dnr

The Afterglow
Recharge with BBQ ribs and bread pudding at Foot Hills Restaurant (906-885-5246) in Ontonagon (five miles from Silver City).

The Way
From Silver City, MI, drive west 2.6 miles on MI 107. Turn left onto South Boundary Rd. and drive 20.5 miles to the Pinkerton trailhead.

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