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Rocket Range

One of the more unusual entries in the Keweenaw's history is that of the Keweenaw Rocket Range. The facility was used from 1964 to 1971 by NASA and the University of Michigan as a launch site for meteorological research rockets. The bulk of these launches were small, though the site did see the launching of ~30 foot Nike Apache rockets.

Today the only remnants of the facility are a concrete pad, a bent rail and a marker commemorating what research was done here 50 years ago. I spent an afternoon getting out here initially and was pretty disappointed to be honest. On the plus side, north of the pad is a stone beach with a cedar forest that would make for an awesome campsite. There are nice outcrops that jut into the lake too. If you come out to the tip to camp at High Rock Bay and people are there, this is a great second option.

To get here, drive north on US-41 until the road ends (east of Copper Harbor). You'll get to a turn around area and US-41 transitions to a dirt road (Mandan Road). Continue for about 5 miles and turn left onto High Rock Bay Road. Continue down it for 2.5 miles. Take a left at this point on Rocket Range Trail and you'll arrive in 2500 feet. These roads are often in very rough shape and depending on recent weather may be impassible using smaller cars. 4 wheel drive is recommended, if not necessary.

Some links worth checking out:

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