More the Along Au Sable, Grayling and Cadillac Region
More Things to Do
Carl T. Johnson Hunt and Fish Center
A central hub for hunting and fishing information in Mitchell State Park in Cadillac also features museum exhibits like a marsh diorama and a wall-size aquarium that houses native Michigan fish (231/779-1321; michigan.gov/dnr).
Water babbles around an extensive boardwalk system as gurgling streams race across the woodland floor and two-feet-deep pools flow into the Au Sable River by Oscoda. It’s nearly 300 steps to the bottom but the panoramic views reward the hike. For those not looking to get a work out, the viewing platform in the parking lot overlooks the beauty (989/739-0728; us23heritageroute.org).
Three bronze lumberjacks tower 4 feet over visitors near Oscoda—but that’s not all. Pop into the visitors’ center and learn the lives lumberjacks and their impact on Michigan. Then venture down more than 270 steps leading to the Au Sable River for breath-taking views (800/821-6263; fs.usda.gov).
Old Au Sable Fly Shop
Become a fly-fishing pro at this Grayling shop on a Saturday afternoon for an affordable price. One-hundred dollars gets you a 4-hour guided fishing trip (rental gear included) and owner Andy Partlo says he has most people casting within 15 minutes (989/348-3330; oldausable.com).
Rainbow Charter Service
Many charter boats bob in and out of the marina in Oscoda, but Capt. William Carmichael’s one-man operation stands out. You decide the departure time and he teaches the way to catch lake trout on a 6-hour cruise in Lake Huron (989/739-5696; angelfire.com).
River Road National Scenic Byway
The ultimate trip along the Au Sable River includes historic and natural highlights over the 22-mile drive from Oscoda to Hale. Gorgeous scenery fills the space between stops at trailheads for hiking, biking and cross-country skiing. Fishermen cast lines near the Foote Hydroelectric Dam while others try to spot bald eagles (989/739-0900; byways.org).
More Places to Eat
Dawson and Steven’s Classic 50s Diner and Soda Fountain
Doo-wop tunes flow from the nostalgic Grayling joint to the sidewalk inviting passersby to take a step into the ‘50s. Pink and sea foam green vinyl covers the booths around the original chrome soda fountain adorning the once pharmacy. Classic diner foods like Ruebens are a staple here among more unique dishes such as the American pie, a grilled cheese sandwich with a gooey layer of apple pie filling (989/348-2111; bottlecapmuseum.com).
Two red Cadillacs, a 1959 and a 1960 Eldorado welcome visitors to the restaurant situated on the second floor of the Eldorado Golf Course clubhouse in Cadillac. The popular 19th hole offers a place for golfers to unwind after a round with sandwiches and burgers for lunch or more upscale items like fish and steak for dinner (231/779-3663; golfeldorado.com).
Tait’s Bill of Fare
Hot flames dance in the fireplace filling the already comfortable Oscoda dining room with warmth. Cozy up with a bowl of the house specialty: Millennium Soup, black bean and white cheddar soups poured one on top of the other creating two layers. Other options include fried walleye or perch, chicken marsala and ribs (989/739-1518).
The homey tavern in Oscoda specializes in American and Greek eats. Pair one of the in-house brews with a selection from the wide range of sandwiches, salads and entrees. The Greek salmon salad with fresh greens, tomato kalamata olives and feta is sure to please (989/739-2231; wiltsesbrewpub.com).
More Places to Stay
Barefoot Beach Resort
A string of cottages line the sandy beach as children run and play. Family fun isn’t hard to come by at this Oscoda resort, which includes a volleyball net, playground, plenty of board games and a deck on each cottage equipped with a grill and picnic table (989/739-1818; barefoot-beach.com).
Huron House B&B
An inn made just for couples complete with lush linens, fireplaces, Jacuzzis, wide screen TVs and gorgeous views of Oscoda’s Lake Huron coast from private decks. Enjoy a complimentary breakfast delivered to the door before heading down to a luscious garden leading to a relaxing beach (989/739-9255; huronhouse.com).
Nestled into the Au Sable River Valley of Oscoda, this Inn is not only beautiful but also romantic. Enjoy breakfast in the room with views of Lake Huron before wandering along the shoreline of a private beach. A Jacuzzi and gas fireplace warm up some of the rooms (989/739-1977).
Six retro buildings sit in a cluster on a lot surrounded by beautiful pines providing a sense of serenity. With an indoor pool and two on-site restaurants, finding a reason to step away from this Cadillac inn might be difficult (800/634-7302; mcguiresresort.com).
For More Information, contact:
Grayling Visitors Bureau (989/348-4945 or 800/937-8837; grayling-mi.com).