June marks the observance of Great Outdoor Month! The Keweenaw Peninsula abounds with explorable potential, beautiful landscapes, and unique features. The CSMHW staff are particularly excited about getting outside this month, so we put our heads together and came up with a list of some of our favorite spots in and around Houghton Michigan.
- Hungarian Falls
Maybe you’re chasing waterfalls, looking for a sick hammocking spot, or just looking to get in a quick hike with some beautiful views. Whatever the case may be, students enjoy this hike because it’s a classic trail that pretty much every MTU student makes a point to hike at least once.
- Nara Nature Trails
The Nara trails are a popular walking, running, skiing, and sledding location for MTU students and Houghton County residents. The Nara trails connect to the MTU trail system. One of the best things about the Nara trails is that they are accessible from the Copper Country Humane Society! Meaning that you can take a furry friend as a walking companion!!
- East Houghton Waterfront Park
The East Houghton Waterfront Park is another well-known location for MTU students. The East Houghton Waterfront Park hosts lots of green space, sits adjacent to the Houghton skate park, and has docks for swimming. The park is definitely one of the most convenient locations for students if they don’t feel like making the drive to a beach.
- The Quincy Mine
Yet another iconic stop in the Keweenaw, the Quincy Mine is one of the most well-recognized landmarks. Visitors can explore the grounds of one of the largest copper mines in the area, take a guided tour and tram ride down into the mine, and visit the steam hoist.
- Houghton Waterfront Bike Trails
The paved bike trails on the Houghton waterfront are used for much more than boking. So head out and get some exercise whether that be running, walking, or biking! If you get tired of the trail, you can stop off in downtown Houghton, go for a swim at princess point, or stop to visit the Pilgrim River nature trails and boardwalk.
- Estivant Pines
Originally a part of a greater nature preserve, Estivant Pines boasts 500+ acres of forest, perfect for hiking. Another draw is the mountain biking trails maintained throughout the summer and fall. If you’re looking for some medium difficulty hiking, head up to Copper Harbor to experience this little piece of well-preserved landscape. Some of the trees are so tall and old that you won’t even be able to fit your arms around them!
- Porvoo Park
Porvoo Park, located on the Hancock side of the canal, is one of the most peaceful spots to hang out with friends, have a picnic, or take in the canal views. There is a swing set and a lit pavilion for anyone who wants to use the park. One of the best features? Porvoo Park is within walking distance of K.C. Bonker’s and Milly’s, meaning that great coffee and pizza are totally an option!
- Big Travers Bay
This location definitely makes you work for the experience of lounging on the beach in the sun. If you’re willing to make the 30-minute drive from Houghton, the sandy beach won’t disappoint. As a bonus, there are camping spots located lake-side. Just make sure to reserve your spot before you camp!
- Bear Bluff
Bear Bluff is a good option if you want to do a longer hike than Hungarian Falls. The hike takes around 1.5 hours with a 3.1-mile trail loop. The views from the top of the buff are unmatched, especially during the fall.