June 15th, 2016 – Soo Locks – Sault Ste Marie, Michigan

Sault Set Marie is located in the upper peninsula of Michigan on the Canadian border and separated from its twin city of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario by the St. Marys River.  It was settled by Native Americans more than 500 years ago and was a crossroads of fishing and trading of tribes around the Great Lakes.

The Soo Locks are a set of parallel locks which enable ships to travel between Lake Superior and the lower Great Lakes. They are located on the St. Marys River between Lake Superior and Lake Huron.  They bypass the rapids of the river where the water falls 21 feet.  The locks pass an average of 10,000 ships per year, despite being closed during the winter from January through March, when ice shuts down shipping on the Great Lakes.

Our first stop was West Pier Drive-in where we had a fantastic burger.  If it was not for the internet, we would never know about these little places with great f00d.  We went on a boat tour that took us through the Soo Locks.  Leslie was very impressed with watching the boat rise 21 feet (on the U.S. side) and then lower 22 feet (on the Canadian side).  She admits is freely, she is a nerd.  The literature for the tour said we would see the scenic coasts of the U.S. and Canada.  Their definition of scenic is boat docks, steel mills and coal yards.  Oh well, it was still a nice ride.

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