Great Lakes Bay Road Trip

We are always up for a good road trip and we recently went on an adventure with stops in Bay City, Frankenmuth, Saginaw and Midland. This road trip was full of paddling, hiking, exploring and some great food along the way. 

We started off in Bay City. This was an area we had not experienced in the past. the main thing we wanted to do in Bay City was to paddle down the Saginaw River through the city. As we got into town the night before the planned paddle, we took a walk down the boardwalk to find the route we wanted to take. While paying attention to the river flow and win direction, we made a plan. Luckily we woke up to a perfect morning with almost no wind and a perfect route planned through Uptown and Downtown Bay City. 

Uptown Bay City

Once we were out on the water, one of the things we were most impressed with was the utilization of the waterfront along the river. There are restaurants, parks, boat launches and places for boats to tie up along the river to go into Bay City. Overall we had a great paddle and made this an out and back paddle. You could also make this a one way paddle if you plan accordingly. 

Paddleboarding Bay City

Bay City River Walk

After we were done paddling, we were wanted to get something to eat and were told we needed to check out Meaty's Roadhouse BBQ and Sausage Shack. This place did not disappoint and is a must-visit when you are in the area, or maybe it can even be the reason to visit the area!

meatys bbq

Meaty's Roadhouse BBQ

Since we were so close, we had to make our way to Bay City State Park. This is a great park located on Saginaw Bay with a nice beach and great water colors. We spent some time exploring the park before heading to our next stop, Frankenmuth. 

Once we were in Frankenmuth we kept the paddling adventures going by going down the Cass River and under the famous covered bridge and past the Bavarian Belle Riverboat. We brought our fishing rods with us and fished during our paddle and even caught something! It was obvious to us that it is a popular fishing spot as we saw a lot of people fishing and talked to a few of them who said they fish in that area often. 

paddling in Frankenmuth

bavarian belle riverboat

Our next stop was just outside of Saginaw, The Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge. We knew we were going to be going for about a 5 mile hike so we geared up and headed out on the trail. Along the way we saw a bunch of different birds, including Bald Eagles, which is a favorite of ours. 

Our road trip ended with a stop in Midland. There was one place in particular that we wanted to check out and that was The Tridge, which is three bridges that come together in the center. Get it? Tri-bridge? Tridge? Ok, now that we have that settled, this is a really cool phot worthy spot. One thing that we always thought from photos was that it was made of iron, but it is actually wood!

The Tridge

Overall, we had a great road trip and there is still so much to explore and dive deeper into each of these areas!

Check out our full adventure here!

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