When you visit Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan, USA then, Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive is certainly must-to-do activity. It is a 7.4 miles drive loop through the Sand Dunes and the Beech-Maple forest.
If you are planning to travel and want to roam around Pierce Stocking drive, you’ll have insight into the area’s history, look at the sample of vegetative inside the park, and, best of all, spectacular overlooks of the Sleeping Bear Dunes, Lake Michigan, and Glen Lakes.
Apart from these scenic drives, you can also take a dunes hike or stop for a picnic in the picnic areas on the drive along the Cottonwood Trail.
Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive Road
You might have never imagined the Michigan World-class vistas feel along the trails. The Scenic drive in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore will definitely reinforce why Congress thought to fit it in the great National Park.
Don’t let a picture describe the beauty of the scenic drive; visit the park and see for yourself because you can’t afford to miss the view from the Glen Lake Overlook.
Who was Pierce Stocking?
Before you go for an absolutely beautiful journey on Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive, let’s know about Pierce Stocking.
At a young age, “Pierce Stocking” was a lumberman in Michigan’s forest. He used to spend most of his spare time in the woods as he loved spending time in the forest. This helped him to get sufficient self-taught knowledge of nature.
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In Lake Michigan and the islands, the views of the dunes feel like heaven from lake Michigan. He always used to walk on those bluffs and was awed by the views. And, he constantly thinks to share this outstanding as well as bewildering beauty with others which made him conceive the idea to make a road to the top of the dunes.
As he was a lumberman who had built many roads on difficult terrains before, that inspired him to build a road to the top of dunes. Further, in the early 1960s, the planning to build a road started. As a result, 7 years later, in 1967, then known as Sleeping Bear Dunes Park, went public as the making road become successful.
In 1976, he died, and, till his last breath, he kept operating the scenic drive. After a year from his death, in 1977, the road became part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore with the decision from Congress.
However, the interesting part comes 7 years later when the drive was renamed after Pierce Stocking to become “Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive.” I can say this is the Best Scenic Drive all across the globe.
Road Map of Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive
On this Scenic Drive, at the Lake Michigan Overlook, you can have one of the most spectacular and amazing views in Lakeshore. You can have a short walk to enjoy the view as well. Try to bring a few things like a chair to stay for a while as the dusk is incredibly mesmerizing. Also, you can sit on the sand for a while to have that feeling that could have never been before or ever after.
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Beautiful Dusk at the Lake Michigan Overlook
If you go around 450 feet above the level of Lake Michigan, then you can see one of the most bone-tickling views which come from the observation deck. You know the dunes are perched on top of a moraine bluff that is made up of a mixture of rocks and deposited sands with time as glaciers melt.
Before you go for Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive, let me remind you that going down the bluff is strictly prohibited, and I would encourage you not to do so too. As it is along the trail, it can be dangerous running down the lake. It is more dangerous for you and the people below as the erosion is pretty obvious on the bluff face.
So, take some precautionary measures as you go up at the Lake Michigan Overlook or any other region in this damn beautiful scenic drive.