The quiet Stonington Peninsula is largely ignored by tourists, lacking accessible sand beaches or commercial attractions. It is a soft and peaceful place, with smooth slabs of bedrock shoreline and sunny meadows that have reclaimed abandoned farmland. To explore the 15-mile-long peninsula, follow U.S. 2 west of Manistique  and turn south on County Road 513 or County Road 511. The Hiawatha National Forest (www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/hiawatha ) manages a nice stretch of shoreline along the peninsula’s west side, with numerous hiking trails.
The peninsula preserves several stands of old-growth hemlocks, hardwoods, and pines. One of the most notable examples is now protected as the Squaw Creek Old Growth Area, part of the Hiawatha National Forest. Though not virgin timber, loggers in the 19th century practiced selective cutting (quite unusual in those days) and left behind several large trees, now huge. Trails are few—just a couple of abandoned logging roads open only to foot traffic. Walking is easy, however, since the high shade canopy created by the trees crowds out the underbrush usually found in the woods.
The peninsula is also an excellent spot for bird-watchers, since the Stonington is a favorite migration stopping point for songbirds. Watch the water’s edge for the great blue herons. These grand birds stand straight and motionless in the water for several minutes, then quickly snatch unsuspecting fish out of the shallows.