Best Hikes Ever: Grand Island Loop, MI

Hike along bluffs and fern forests in total solitude on Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

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Locals (called yoopers) on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula know there’s more to see around Lake Superior than the famed (and oft-covered in the pages of this magazine) Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and the namesake waterway that inspired Ernest Hemingway’s Big Two-Hearted River. Little-visited Grand Island National Recreation Area borders the shore with sea cliffs, serene coves, and secluded backcountry campsites.

Hike the Rim Trail for a 17-mile circle around Grand Island’s shoreline and along grassy roads through the interior’s fern-filled forests. Close the loop with a 2.5-mile roadwalk. Access via the Grand Island Landing ferry ($15 includes the $2 entrance fee). Pack binocs: You can see Pictured Rocks two miles distant.

Maps USGS quads Wood Island and Munising (all quads $8 each,

Contact (906) 387-2512; fs.fed .gov/r9/hiawatha