Leelanau Sunday: Empire Bluff Trail

Leelanau Sunday: Empire Bluff Trail

The problem:  a warm Sunday morning in early July.  (the 1st to be exact.)  A desire to take a hike, spend some time in nature, avail oneself of spectacular views.  The solution:  Empire Bluff Trail part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and last year’s winner of the Most Beautiful Place in America. (not that I’m bragging.)  A mostly shady climb to the top of Empire Bluff, punctuated by breathtaking views of Lake Michigan and South Bar Lake, with a final climactic walk along a boardwalk to the majesty that is Lake Michigan.  Highly recommended as a place to go on the day before Monday.

Halfway to the top, a not-so-shabby view of Lake Michigan and South Bar Lake.


A shady boardwalk that is the precursor to the climactic finish at the top.


Your reward at the top?  A look at the vastness of Lake Michigan.