Fifteen Pure Michigan Moments To Inspire Your Next Getaway

Another successful Pure Michigan Moments photo contest is in the books. This year, a record 4,000 photos were submitted! We were absolutely blown away by the number of images that truly captured the beauty and character of Pure Michigan. These 15 awe-inspiring Pure Michigan moments are reason enough to pack your bags and make a trip to the Mitten State. 

To view all of the submissions from this year’s contest, visit michigan.org/photocontest.

Congratulations to our winning photographer, Ryan Zeller! We love this wintry sunrise taken in Lexington, MI. Read about Ryan’s winning entry here.

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Amazing sunset at Pere Marquette Beach in Muskegon, MI. Photo by Joe Gee

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Turnip Rock in Port Austin. Photo by Shalee Blackmer.

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AuSable River near Oscoda. Photo by Steve Femminineo.

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South Haven, MI. Photo by Pete Shannon.

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Rise and shine on Douglas Lake. Photo by Michael Tokarz.

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Lake Michigan wave action at McGulpin Point. Photo by Linda Sorensen.

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Michigan love at Rosy Mound Natural Area. Photo by Dane Vermeulen.

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Manistique, MI. Photo by Carly Maas.

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Grand Rapids, MI. Photo by Amy Kopec.

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Backpacking in the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. Photo by Gary McCormick.

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The Presque Isle River on a fall morning. Porcupine Mountains State Park, Ontonagon, MI. Photo by Brad Terry.

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Hickory Corners, MI. Photo by Joey Stap.

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Loving the sand at Sleeping Bear Dunes. Photo by Deb Oung.

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Wagner Falls near Munising. Photo by Paul Schrader.

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Do you have a Pure Michigan moment to share? Tag it with #PureMichigan on Instagram or Twitter or post it to our Pure Michigan Facebook page!

What Happens When Six Photographers Meet Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

There’s no question that fall in Pure Michigan is a dream come true for a shutterbug. Today, guest blogger and landscape photographer Aubrieta V. Hope shares the story of six photographers who set off for the Upper Peninsula in search of scenic fall vistas.

Once upon a time, six shooters ventured north to the Tripod Forest, a fabled land of brilliant fall color in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.  All were packing:  most brought Nikon’s, but two carried Canons.  They loaded up minivans, SUV’s and 4×4′s, bringing filters and flashlights, bug spray, raingear, ice scrapers, and backpacks.   About half of them planned to find a campsite someplace and the others made hotel reservations.  Some had never met, but were destined to.  A few of them hoped to cross paths up there somewhere.

It was late September and their only plan was to find and follow the color.  Frost was in the forecast.  The time was now.  The 2014 Michigan Fall Foliage Convention had begun!

Their program?  It all depended on the trees, sun, wind, and cloud cover.  Some headed for the western U.P. first, others tracked to central inland areas.  In this rugged and beautiful land, photo opportunities crop up everywhere.  Cell coverage, however, can be scarce, especially in the most remote areas.  So, happenstance and coincidence tend to be the best, if not the only, methods of connection.  That certainly proved to be true for the shooters in our tale:  Neil Weaver, Craig Sterken, John McCormick, Phil Stagg, Ken Keifer, and Aubrieta Hope.

Over the next couple of weeks, with surprising frequency and with almost no planning, these six shooters ran into each other on rocky outcrops, at the end of nearly impassable two-tracks, in parking lots, and other likely and unlikely places.  They shared location tips, stories of shots taken and shots missed, and bucket lists of dreams on the front burner. There was no conference schedule.  Everyone had their own agenda. But there was plenty of camaraderie and inspiration. And, there were rescues, for example when Aubrieta fractured her ankle on a trail and was glad to be shooting with others at the time.

Outdoor photography is an unpredictable pursuit.  It’s nice to have friends in the vicinity!  So, maybe this was more of a round-up than a convention, all these creative mavericks meeting on the beaches and overlooks, sharing tripod space and good light, and bagging some great shots.

Here’s a glimpse of some of their adventures:

Craig Sterken at Paradise Point, Christmas, Michigan. Photo by Neil Weaver Photography.

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Sunset, Miners Beach, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore by Phil Stagg (Michigan Waterfalls)

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Aubrieta Hope at Cloud Peak, Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park. Photo by Michigan Nut Photography.

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Mouth of the Hurricane River at Sunset by Michigan Nut Photography

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Misty Morning at Manido Falls – Porcupine Wilderness State Park by Craig Sterken Photography

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Carp River at Dusk by Neil Weaver Photography

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Photographers at Miners Beach, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore by Phil Stagg (Michigan Waterfalls)

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Stormy Afternoon at Paradise Point, Christmas, Michigan by Aubrieta V. Hope/Michigan Scenery

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Storming the Castle, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore by Kenneth Keifer

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Where is your favorite place in Michigan to snap a few photos? 

MI14-0606-0758 Aubrieta V HopeAubrieta V. Hope is a landscape photographer with a special interest in Northwest and Upper Michigan; check out her website. She also highly recommends the following websites for beautiful Michigan/Great Lakes photography:  Neil Weaver Photography, Michigan Nut Photography (featuring John McCormick’s Photography), Craig Sterken Photography, MI Falls (featuring Phil Stagg’s photography) and Kenneth Keifer Photography.    

 

Five Phenomenal Instagram Photos From Our Fans in October 2014

Fall in Michigan is a photographer’s paradise! Last month, our Pure Michigan Instagram community perfectly captured the beauty of our Pure Michigan fall. From sunrises to a lunar eclipse, here are a few favorites shared with us in October. For more, see our JulyAugust and September roundups and be sure to follow Pure Michigan on Instagram.

 What a way to start the day! A pastel sunrise hues over Houghton, MI from Instagram user  @jlfuller989.

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 Nice shot of Turnip Rock in Port Austin beginning to change for the season. Photo by Instagram user @jlsuper.

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Colorful trees surround Tahquamenon Falls like multi-colored gems. Photo by Instagram user @visitthesault.

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Did you see the lunar eclipse last month? This shot of the blood moon was captured over Grand Haven by @csmith8504.

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Sometimes the best fall colors are right in your own backyard! Photo by Instagram user @hockeygirl0011.

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If you’re on Instagram, follow us @PureMichigan! If you’d like us to share your photos from across the state, please tag them with #PureMichigan to give us permission to “re-gram.”