What we're up to this month

Follow the fun on instagram @mmvalade @dylanvalade

Hometowns: Petoskey, MI and Brighton, MI

Dylan James Valade

I am a fisherman, skier, snowboarder, artist, and web designer.  After college, I spent five years in Colorado living in Glenwood Springs and Breckenridge.  I have become an accomplished big mountain skier, fly fisherman, painter and sailor with a passion for the outdoors.  My membership is active at the Boyne City Eagles and Charlevoix Rod & Gun Club.

We Are Up North has been a great opportunity to meet so many Michigan business owners and active people.  Everywhere I go the second people hear about the website they start telling me all of the wonderful hidden spots they know. Northern locals are happy to let share secret trails, scenic beaches, hidden restaurants, seasonal roads and old cottages.  I write down everything and plan to find every single one and post the best of the best on weareupnorth.com.


My career as a website designer and computer programmer allows me the freedom of living anywhere in the world with high speed internet. Travel with family, friends and alone has taken me across most of North America, the Caribbean, Central America and northern Europe.  After all of my life changing experiences my favorite place in the world is still Michigan's backyard.  Up North is giant, summery, colorful, wintry and wonderful!  The cherry on top is that my family and friends love spending time in northern Michigan so I get to connect with everyone when they have time off for R&R.

A distinct advantage I have over other hobbyists is my schedule.  When the sun is shining or the snow is falling I can take lunch on the river or slopes!  If it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert at something, then my expertise includes Up North recreation, skiing and snowboarding, living in the Rocky Mountains and designing websites.  We Are Up North is the combination of Meghann and my experiences together with all of the people we know who want to share their passions and knowledge with our readers.  When you ask someone who is enthusiastic about their sport or hobby, they will show you how to do everything and that passion is contagious.  The better Michiganders get at everything, the happier and better off we will be.  Stay tuned and I will show you how to do every hobby and activity I know in northern Michigan.


Dylan was raised in Brighton, Michigan and cottaged on Mullett Lake in Cheboygan where his family has owned a cottage for the better part of a century.  Dylan's family spends most of their time in the Detroit metropolitan area and vacations in the Upper Peninsula, Mackinaw and Cheboygan.


Dylan graduated from Detroit Catholic Central High School and received a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science & Systems Analysis from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.  Minors in Fine Art and Math.

Pine Lake Design is a member of the Petoskey Chamber of Commerce.

What Do You Think about Hometowns: Petoskey, MI and Brighton, MI?

Locals Tip

Go boating this week!  You can try a kayak, ski boat, fishing boat, row boat, sail boat, canoe, old raft, tugboat, ferry or sit on top of six life jackets stuffed in a box.

My secret confession: I secretly love the indoor waterpark at Avalanche Bay!

One thing I want to do before I die: Ski a backcountry powder day in the Upper Peninsula!

Something you don't know about me: I have an insatiable sweet tooth.  Sometimes I have to order dessert before my meal.

"Smile, it makes you feel better!" Meghann
"Michigan is the best state in the union and my favorite place on Earth." Dylan