Scenic USA - Michigan

Porvoo Park

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Porvoo Park - Hancock, Michigan

Photos by Ben Prepelka
Ben's Panoramio Gallery

     The town of Hancock, located on Michiganís Keweenaw Peninsula, is spread out across the steep Quincy Hill that overlooks Lake Portage. Once owned by the Quincy Mining Company, the hill proved barren of copper ore, and was quickly sold off to businessmen and merchants. With huge successes at the Pewabic Lode, Hancock flourished as a mining town and became the region's second largest city.
     Today, Hancock's waterfront is thick with town houses and condominiums. USCGC Alder (WLB-216) Porvoo Park provides a nice break in the skyline, stretching out along Portage Lake and offering a boardwalk, picnic pavilion and fishing piers. Here on the waterfront, park-goers may sit and take in views of lake, enjoy watching lake bound traffic, appreciate a view of Houghton across the canal and area's main link between the two major cities, the Houghton-Hancock Bridge.
     One of a succession of bridges to replace a mid 1800s ferry, the Portage Lake Lift Bridge is the heaviest and widest double-decked vertical lift bridge in the world. Built in 1959, the bridge was designed to accommodate heavy rail traffic and well as vehicle traffic. Able to be raised 100 feet, the bridge allows lake bound ships to pass underneath. Here, the Portage Canal connects Keweenaw Bay to Lake Superior, allowing U.S. Coast Guard easy access to both sides of the Keweenaw Peninsula.
     Although mining is no longer a major industry on the peninsula, Hancock remains a vibrant city. Tourism is big on the Keweenaw Peninsula, and Hancock is eager accommodate its guests at area hotels, restaurants and public venues.

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