Mackinaw City Vacation: Part IV - Historic Mill Creek Discovery Park

This is the fourth and final post from our Mackinaw City vacation.

The first post was a video review of our campground, Mackinaw Mill Creek Camping.

The second post was a video of our day trip to Mackinac Island.

The third post was a video of our day trip to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

Today's post is a video of our day trip to Historic Mill Creek Adventure Park.

Just a mile down U.S. 23 from our campground, Historic Mill Creek Adventure Park was a nice side trip.

For years, the state park was nothing more than a nifty little take on the lumber mill that once occupied the property 200 years ago. According to the park's brochure, "forgotten in the late 1800s, Mill Creek was rediscovered in 1972 and reconstructed after extensive archaeological work. A working 18th-century water-powered sawmill chews through timber while the millwright describes the impact this industrial innovation had on the region."

How much of an impact? We were told that a laborer with his bare hands and an axe could cut 10 boards of lumber from trees per day and be paid 10 cents for his efforts. The mill was able to produce 100 boards per day. That lumber supplied the construction of Fort Mackinac and the dozen or so other buildings - all key to the fur trade. And that fur trade was extremely profitable. Whereas the axeman was making 10 cents per day, John Jacob Astor in one year made $3 million of the fur trade industry. This is in the late 1800s, folks.

The other part of the park was the Adventure Course, featuring a five-story Treetop Discovery Climbing Wall, the 50-foot high Forest Canopy Bridge and the 425-foot long Eagle’s Flight Zip Line. No words can do this justice; you'll just have to watch the video.