Weather: Sunny, mid 70s with low humidity
Location: LAT 44.10555, LONG -86.85888
Saturday’s adventure was to ride Silver Lake Sand Dunes. There are a few ways we could accomplish this, the first was to buy an ORV license for $26.25 and take our jeep. Which was not our preference after seeing how the jeeps are customized for off-roading, here at the campground, and besides, our Jeep is our daily form of transportation, so we really didn’t want to tear it up. The second way was to rent a Jeep at $165/hr, or a dune buggy at $180/hr. Sorry, but that’s just way too expensive. So, we chose the third option, the Mac Woods Dune Rides for $18.00 each.
These rides started in 1930 as entertainment for Mac’s family and friends, and the business was started after neighbors and visitors to the area talked him into it. The first dune scooter was designed from a Ford Model A. It carried four passengers, and twenty-five cents was the charge for the ride. Today they use modified Ford F-250’s and carry about twenty passengers per trip.
In their museum, they have a few of the older tour vehicles, There’s a 1934 Ford, a 1960 Studebaker, and a 1968 International. There’s also some old pictures and signs.
It was about a 40-minute wait once we bought our tickets, and when our name was called we got the last two seats on the “Sand Drifter”. We later found out that our driver was the great-grandson of Mac Woods. After hearing that I figured we were totally safe since he grew up on the dunes, but I wished he would have told us that way earlier in the tour (like the first dune)
The only downside of the ride was that it was really hard to take pictures when we were going up and down. The driver did tell us at the beginning that we would not be going back for anything lost (hats, cameras, people), so the only time I could take a picture was when we were stopped and the driver was explaining the area, or down at the shoreline of Lake Michigan.
We had a good time on the ride, and it reminded both of us that we really don’t like roller coasters, but we had fun and wouldn’t be able to have adventures like this if we weren’t full timing.
Until next time