What we're up to this month

Follow the fun on instagram @mmvalade @dylanvalade


Boyne City, MI

Avalanche Zip Line Rush!

Boyne City public harbor on Lake CharlevoixBoyne City public harbor on Lake Charlevoix
Boyne City chamber of commerceBoyne City chamber of commerce
Lake Street Market pies and owner LizLake Street Market pies and owner Liz
Zip Line headquarters in a yurt on Boyne City - Charlevoix Rd.Zip Line headquarters in a yurt on Boyne City - Charlevoix Rd.
Gear up with help from staffGear up with help from staff
Ride in the big rig up the mountain!Ride in the big rig up the mountain!
Barefoot and Five Finger shoes for everyone!Barefoot and Five Finger shoes for everyone!
Meghann is a little nervous before her first zipMeghann is a little nervous before her first zip
Incredible woodworking careful to protect the treesIncredible woodworking careful to protect the trees
Great suspension bridges connect elevated platformsGreat suspension bridges connect elevated platforms
Dylan coming in to a platform in the sky!Dylan coming in to a platform in the sky!
Romance in the woods looking at Lake CharlevoixRomance in the woods looking at Lake Charlevoix
Hardcore climbing gear keeps us safeHardcore climbing gear keeps us safe
Monkeying aroundMonkeying around
These bridges are the real deal!These bridges are the real deal!
Some bridges require you to be harnessed in overheadSome bridges require you to be harnessed in overhead
Meghann coming in hot!Meghann coming in hot!
The final line a triple that goes 40 miles per hour!The final line a triple that goes 40 miles per hour!
1200 feet long back down to the basecamp yurt1200 feet long back down to the basecamp yurt
Great, knowledgable and friendly staffGreat, knowledgable and friendly staff
Lake Street Market in Boyne CityLake Street Market in Boyne City
Delicious sandwiches and wraps made to orderDelicious sandwiches and wraps made to order
Design your own sandwichDesign your own sandwich
Wine cellar and craft beersWine cellar and craft beers
How to order a sandwich!How to order a sandwich!
The weekly restaurant gift certificate cache!The weekly restaurant gift certificate cache!
Hoppy adventures for your taste buds!Hoppy adventures for your taste buds!
Water Street Inn is a condo hotel in Boyne CityWater Street Inn is a condo hotel in Boyne City
Water Street Inn beach and three story porchesWater Street Inn beach and three story porches

by Meghann

Park your car and enjoy Boyne City pedestrian style. Walk to our favorite deli and enjoy breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Boyne City is my hometown and more than a winter ski town! The population quadruples in size during the summer months. The restaurant scene is ramping up and the water views are breathtaking! Boyne City's newest addition, Wildwood Rush Zip Line Tour, is the adrenaline soar you've been looking for! This zip line canopy tour flies through the forest with expansive views of Lake Charlevoix. Watch our video for the full experience!

1. Get your adrenaline flowing and work out your smile muscles at Wildwood Rush Zip Line Canopy Tour

This isn't your grandma's zip line! Get ready to soar through the forests and explore the wilds of Northern Michigan! Fly down over 5,000 feet of zip lines, cross 5 sky bridges, and take in amazing views of Lake Charlevoix from tree platforms high above the forest floor. The tour has been designed to educate, entertain and inspire adventurers of all ages. The passionate staff at Wildwood Rush is extremely knowledgeable and welcoming. Many of the staff helped build the zip lines! Guides explain the zip line process while giving you a full history on the building of Wildwood Rush and details about the local ecosystem

To say we had a blast is a serious understatement. This was AWESOME! The Wildwood guys have done it right, from the hand carved railings on the sky bridges and platform landings with tree stump elevators. Upon arrival, you'll head into the basecamp yurt to sign your life away.  Then suit up and jump into the back of their mud-bogging pickup truck to ride up to the top of the backwoods tour. Don't worry, the bed of the pickup is fully equipped with plastic chairs and seat belts! I felt like I was riding through Jurassic Park! Duane and Dustay, guided us safely and excitedly through all 9 forest zips. We did the Full Canopy Tour, which includes a final 40 miles per hour, 1200 foot triple racing zip line!

Click here to watch our video tour of Wildwood Rush!

Thanks to Wildwood Rush for letting us be one of the first groups to test out their new zip line tour. We are behind you 100%!

2. Taste a bit of Heaven at Lake Street Market

If you could take two small handfuls of heaven and smash them in a french baguette it would be called Lake Street Market. Swing by early morning for a to-die-for scone (seriously I would give my left foot for one). If you're not an early bird, call ahead and reserve a few scones because they sell out almost every Saturday morning! You can also take pastries home frozen and bake them yourself!

Stop in for lunch, grab a sandwich, enjoy the SOBO (South of Boyne) street traffic and relax. Co-owner Chris is always around to help assist you in the wine cellar, he'll pick the perfect tannins for your palette. Co-owner Liz will help you pick your sandwich, whip up a homemade pizza for you to take home, or sell you an amazing piece of her personal photography. Resident dog Bang greets you at the door and gladly cleans up your scraps dropped on the sidewalk as you devour lunch. You can't go wrong with sandwich names like Inflector Gadget, The Duby Project and Hazardous Waist. Each sandwich is carefully crafted with the freshest ingredients. Dylan always goes for Mr. Wubbly’s Fat Bass, which is cranberry chicken salad on a wheat wrap. I prefer my own vegetarian creation named Chatarunga: French baguette, honey mustard, hummus, lettuce, tomato, extra avocado, pickles, & cucumber.

3. Hike, run, walk, bike, view and play at Avalanche Recreation Center

"600 steps to a willow tree, Lake Charlevoix those painted leaves, sandy paths that drip inside of me" -Silence & Color by local musician, Josh Hall. It's a strenuous hike to summit Avalanche "mountain" but at the top, you forget the sweat drips on your forehead and simply enjoy the breathtaking view. Think panoramic, clear blue water, miles of beach and endless sky. The view of Lake Charlevoix all the way to Lake Michigan from the top is simply amazing.

Walk for ten minutes up the several hundred stairs for a quick view or take a 30-45 minute gradual hike through the woods on the well traveled path. Avalanche is dog friendly area, including a doggie water fountain at the top! Watch out for disc golfers (frisbee golf). The 18-hole disc golf course crosses the hiking and biking paths at various points. Mingle with the locals, walk with the cottagers or get your heart pumping with the midweek $5 boot camp sessions at 8:30am year round! Avalanche will become a frequent stop on your travels.

4. Stay at the Water Street Inn

Finding good lodging in Boyne City without a weekly minimum is a challenge. Our first choice is always to find a friendly cottage with an extra room but we like to stay right in the mix once in a while.  Water Street Inn was completely booked so we were unable to photograph the rooms.  By peeking in the windows it looks like every room faces the water of Lake Charlevoix and has a fireplace.  The front desk said that the rooms are waterfront condos with one bedroom and a fold out couch.  Water Street's location is perfect for walking to everything downtown and their private beach is beautiful.

View Avalanche Zip Line Rush! on Google Maps

What Do You Think about Boyne City, MI?

Adventure Rating: A-

If you are terrified by heights or fun then this is not the adventure for you! Walking along elevated suspension bridges and standing 50 feet in the air on a deck with no railing is exhilarating. Flying through narrow tree corridors as branches nip at your feet lets you know you're alive!

You must weigh between 70-250 pounds, and be at least 8 years old. You have to take a parent if you're under 16. Close-toed shoes are required! You'll need average mobility and strength and reasonably good health. Sorry moms, no buns are allowed in the oven and you cannot zip on alcohol - though we never recommend mixing the last two.

Locals Tip

Wildwood Rush offers a few tours between $16 and $75. We did The Full Canopy Tour with takes about 2 hours from walking into the base camp yurt lot to the last smile. You'll be deep in thick woods, so just prepare accordingly. You can bring your camera and video camera but they might drop 100 feet to the ground! Leave your phone, wallet, keys etc. in the car if you can.

up north michigan poster

"Bring bug spray - not the natural stuff, get the DEET. The boys had no problem, but I had some bites. Do not wear perfumed lotion or perfume because the bugs love it." Meghann "Why does every incredible experience require my signature on a waiver saying I won't be mad when I get badly injured in the next 90 minutes?" Dylan

Geocache Winner

Winner winner chicken dinner!  Andrew Boyer sent in some great pictures of his trip to Wildwood Rush to win the gift certificate to Lake Street in Boyne City!

Our newsletter subscribers receive the geocache or photo hunt location a full day before we post it on the site. Sign up todayso you can be an insider on the weekly treasure hunt!

The coordinates for the gift card are: 

Photo Hunt!

Every week we add a photo hunt or new geocache (pronounced "geo cash") somewhere in the northern wilderness with the hope that we'll give other Up North explorers a reason to leave their couch and enjoy the inspiring beauty, history and excitement Michigan has to offer.

Learn a bit about geocaching over at Wikipedia