Madeline Island

Due to some trails being closed at Big Bay State Park I was left extra time to explore La Pointe, Wisconsin on Madeline Island.  Sharing everything in one post for lack of a better place to put these odds & ends.  First step to visiting the island is actually getting there via the ferry that departs from Bayfield several times daily in peak seasons.

Another view of the ferry docked & deboarding at La Pointe.  I’m not sure exactly how many cars fit on this size vessel but would guess it’s more than 20 (though often less when people tow large campers).

The welcome sign to La Pointe also has text in Anishinaabe (Ojibwe/Ojibway/Chippewa), the native language of the Ojibwe Tribes, that reads “Gidanamikaagoo omaa Mooningwanekaaning!” meaning “Welcome to Madeline Island”. Quite interestingly the signs were put in place by the local residents to celebrate the Ojibwe heritage – watch a cool video here & also read this article if you find it interesting like me!

Of course anyone who visits can’t avoid seeing the giant moose parade float outside Tom’s Burned Down Cafe, a local dive bar that has live music and is pretty rad compared to the other more posh restaurants on the shoreline.

One place that probably isn’t visited much is the La Pointe Indian Cemetery.  It’s tucked behind the yacht club boatyard and can easily be missed.  Pretty cool natural heritage site.

Most of the afternoon I walked around town with no real goal other than exploring.  At the direction of some locals I visited the Pub Restaurant for a burger & beers. Food & bartenders were decent but the trust-fund-baby crowd wasn’t my jam. Get your orders “to go”, it’s kinda stuffy inside.

Later in the evening I still wandered the main “downtown” of La Pointe and found enough interesting scenery right along the docks.  Plenty of friendly and well-fed ducks approached without fear but must have been disappointed I didn’t have any snacks.

It wasn’t long until the sun was going down throwing some fantastic orange and purple hues across the rippled water.  My feathered friends were still paddling happily around the docks.

The sunset, while not the postcard material you expect, was still stunning in it’s own way.  It was only a few days off the new moon and I really wanted to try some astro shots but the clouds had other ideas. C’est La Vie, maybe another time.


Here’s a short video of my adventures on Madeline Island including the hikes at Big Bay State Park.  Hope you enjoy but I’m not trying too hard here – mostly just a bunch of clips that I got lucky with while trying to learn about both new cameras.

Still have more content coming from the July trip.  Date that I’m actually posting this is May 4, 2020 so you can see I’m behind almost a full year.  100% I am a champion procrastinator!

Lat = 46.7799606 , Long = -90.7884598 -- Show at Google Maps

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