On my Bucket List: "The Seney Stretch" in Michigan's UP

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by Greg55_99, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. Greg55_99

    Greg55_99 Adventurer

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    I ain't dead yet but I've made a vow for next year. Hit the Seney Stretch again only THIS time on my FXRC. A little background. I went to Michigan Tech from 1973 to 1975 (flunked out, too much drinkin' and not enough studying). The fastest piece of road in the UP is the "Seney Stetch". A 25 mile LONG piece of flat, straight road between Seney and Shingleton. In 1974, between flunking out and going home to Ohio, I rode with some guys flat out in a 1969 Dodge Charger 440 on that damn road with the speedo needle buried at 120 mph and riding on bias ply tires. I was young and stupid then. Anyway, I haven't been on that road since 1975 but I'm going to hit it again before I kick off. Flat out and flying.

    Greg
    #1
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  2. Yukonrider1

    Yukonrider1 Adventurer

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    Marquette
    They changed the speed limit to 65 recently, now you can go even faster!
    #2
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  3. svtride

    svtride Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    Oddometer:
    903
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    SE Michigan - MotorCity
    Did it have the 3 lane passing zones back then? If not, now you can go even faster.
    Michigan's UP, one of my favorite areas to visit.
    #3
  4. 9Realms

    9Realms Drawn in by the complex plot

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Central Minn.
    I wasn't familiar with this ride... so I had to look it up.
    I was hooked once I read "the lumber town of Seney, once a raucous den of drink, gambling, and prostitution"

    On my list now, thanks! :-)

    seney mapped.jpg


    THE ROAD BETWEEN THE TOWNS of Seney and Shingleton in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan is a 25-mile, laser-straight shot through a vast swamp and wildlife refuge.

    It is an urban legend that US Interstate Highways have to have curves to keep drivers from falling asleep, or that one mile in every five be straight to allow aircraft to land. Michigan’s M-28 highway, completed in the 1920’s, runs through a spring-fed swamp that resisted human efforts to drain it for farmland. With no hills to contour around, this road was made straight as an arrow between the railroad town of Shingleton and the lumber town of Seney, once a raucous den of drink, gambling, and prostitution. Ernest Hemingway would stay here and once boasted that he caught 200 trout in the nearby streams. His short story “Big Two-Hearted River” was set in the town.

    The Seney Stretch cuts through the swamp with acres of jack pine wetlands alongside the road, and it crosses through the Seney National Wildlife Refuge. Established in 1935, the sandhill crane, gray wolf, black-throated blue warbler, and many other species make their home in the refuge.

    The road itself is.... straight. Flat, as well. It is named “the most boring road in the state” in various publications. Yet, on this road, one can hit cruise control and take in the beauty of the surrounding wetlands.

    STOLEN DIRECTLY FROM HERE:

    https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/the-seney-stretch-seney-michigan
    #4
  5. Greg55_99

    Greg55_99 Adventurer

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    In 1975, it was a two lane road. Trees on either side and it ran parallel to the Soo Line railroad tracks. Flat out is the only way to go!

    Greg
    #5
  6. djroszina

    djroszina Long timer Supporter

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    I’m envisioning kind of like the “Alligator Alley” of the north.
    #6
  7. Yooper_Bob

    Yooper_Bob Insert witty saying here....

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,270
    Location:
    Da UP, eh! (Marquette, MI)
    I've driven it thousands of times and ridden it hundreds.... the novelty wears off quickly.

    It is a good stretch (no pun intended) to catch a glimpse of either a wolf or moose when traveling it in the early mornings or right at sunset.
    #7
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  8. luftkoph

    luftkoph Long timer Super Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
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    U.P. mich
    I got a stretch story from a little over 20 years ago.

    pulled out of Ironwood, late Friday night with 90,000 lbs of grinding balls on the deck of a set of B-trains, cold out -20 to -30 outside, but with a thermos full of hot black coffee,and the cab of the Pete nice and cozy warm, the 3406 crankapillar was eager to go for the 300 mile non stop to the junk yard near the Soo.

    Light snow the whole way across, maybe 2-3 inches of powder on the road when I came out of Shingleton, get the ole girl up to my 60 mph cruising speed, eased the road ranger into 13th and rolled on down the road, no traffic at all, the whole road to myself at these wee hours of the morning.

    Although it’s calm and warm in the cab listening to the trucking Bozo on 700 am, with 38 tires plowing thru the white powder,it’s not calm behind the trailers, it’s a whirling, twirling micro blizzard that light can not even penetrate.

    Now I start picking up snow dust in the air mixed with the light powder that’s falling, a sure sign of another vehicles ahead, then I see the flicker of red as his left taillight peeks out from the snow cloud behind his car, I pace him for a bit, under 55 is all he’s doing, not good enough, I put it to the mat, and get her wound up for the pass, move over into the oncoming lane, no lights in sight, keep her matted to the floor.

    as I’m about 50 feet off his left rear I see it, yup Schoolcraft county deputy, what now back off and look like a chicken shit, nope keep it to the floor, soon as I’m half way past his headlights all but disappeared, all’s I’m thinking now is if he’s pissed well the county line is just a few miles ahead past Seney, and he won’t be able to get anywhere near close to me on account of the poor visibility
    after a bit I could see in the mirror he’d pulled over on the shoulder till the air cleared, and I got home unscathed
    #8
  9. varnerju

    varnerju Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2017
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    West Michigan
    Done the Seney Stretch several times myself, both on two and four wheels. I can understand the nostalgia of wanting to revisit, but would suggest you make a loop out of it, and hit H58 too. While M28 Seney stretch is the straightest, H58 is one of the curviest, call it the antidote for the stretch. Either way, hope you get to accomplish your dreams!
    #9
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  10. Beardoge

    Beardoge Been here awhile

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    Oh yeah the BJ road....
    #10
  11. Yooper_Bob

    Yooper_Bob Insert witty saying here....

    Joined:
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    Da UP, eh! (Marquette, MI)
    Drove it Wednesday on the way to my cabin, and will be driving it again on Sunday going home....meh!:dunno
    #11
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  12. snofrog

    snofrog Long timer

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    If you dont mind turning corners . Take H-58 from 94 up into Grand Marais
    #12
  13. djroszina

    djroszina Long timer Supporter

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    Doesn’t the Turdy Point Buck live up there???
    #13
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  14. Mike E

    Mike E Been here awhile Supporter

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    Lots of police on that section. It generates a lot of revenue for the locals.
    #14
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  15. Greg55_99

    Greg55_99 Adventurer

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    I can only wonder why...

    Greg
    #15
  16. snofrog

    snofrog Long timer

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    Mostly state boys out of Newberry is what I've seen
    #16
  17. cb0802

    cb0802 Been here awhile

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    Madison, WI
    Family live in the UP. I can’t think of any reason why you’d put that road on your bucket list, but if you decide to take it out, I’d recommend taking HWY 2 on the ride back. It a a beautiful ride with some great views of the lake.
    #17
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  18. Munson'd

    Munson'd Adventurer

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    Madison, WI
    I rode that stretch on my chopper back in 2018 with 25-35mph cross winds. Good, ugh, times.
    #18
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  19. sprink

    sprink Adventurer

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    My first time in the UP, I got a ticket 5 miles down US 2 about a minute after my passenger tells me I can pick it up a bit no cops here......

    Fast forward 15 years, and my first trip across Seney, I get passed by a semi going easily 10 mph faster than I am going. Shortly it goes out of sight I see a sign warning of lower speed limit coming up so I slow to 35. Boom, lights and siren. I get a ticket for 5 over and the Sheriff says he didn't see any truck fly by......
    #19
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