pictured pictures

after checking out a few local parks, it was time for the main event: pictured rocks!  levi, having been here many times before, knew that the best way to enjoy the national park wasn't by boat tour, but by renting our own boat and wandering around by ourselves for the day!  we got there a bit before our scheduled rental, so we grabbed a bit to eat at a really cool homegrown cafe.  after a light snack, we walked over to a little shop or two and got a couple gifts for ledger- well, we couldn't exactly come home empty handed, could we?
finally, it was time to get our boat, so we headed over.  levi took care of the paperwork while the rest of us loaded up our supplies for the day.  they had a bunch of great boats, but we lucked out and got the best, newest one in the fleet- what luck!  after the safety rundown, we were off- out on the open water with an awesome powerful boat to go play on!  as we pushed off the dock it really felt like we were kids again and we had just gotten away with something- how could anyone trust us with such an awesome ship?  it baffles the mind...
for the next five hours we were on our own- free to check out all the sights for ourselves!  we wandered around in the bay for a while, stopping over at a shipwreck to check it out.  the water was so clear we could see the remains of the ship that sunk back in the 1800's.  after that we headed down the coast to see the amazing cliffs and waterfalls that lined the coast of lake superior.  i tell ya what, we could not have possibly gotten a more beautiful day- we started off in hoodies, but within an hour the sun had warmed us up enough to enjoy the trip in shorts and t-shirts.  the sky was clear and the water was warm... ish.  well, it is lake superior after all, it doesn't really get warm.  to be honest, the next several hours are some of the greatest of my life- out on the open water with my beautiful wife and a couple great friends, we just got to soak up the unbelievable views and experience total freedom!  it was so amazing that i am kind of at a loss for words, actually.  at one point we pulled into the shore, pulled out the coolers, and had a nice lunch together.  well, levi and i did anyway, the two girls were too busy collecting shiny rocks from the beach to waste time eating!  after the shore visit, which involved dropped sunglasses and a totally soaked miranda who retrieved them, we continued on our way down the coast.  finally, after seeing an amazing waterfall that shot off the cliff into the water, we realized that it was time to head back.  so we pulled around and were on our way.  just for fun we decided to take the long way around the island back to the rental place.  oops.  turns out the island is a lot bigger than we had anticipated... we ended up getting back to the dock about an hour later than we were supposed to.  they were totally cool with it, so everything turned out ok, but we were getting a bit worried about the clock as we kept rounding what we thought was the last bend in the island... only to see another one appear!  i guess next time we will have to rent it for longer! (oh, darn!)
(more pics: 1, 2, 3)

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