Day Three - Kelleys Island, Ohio

Kelleys Island Travel Blog

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Loading and Unloading the ferry

Another beautiful day dawned on the Lake Erie Islands!  Today's adventure, Kelleys Island, is just a short 20 minute ride on the Kelley's Island Ferry.  The company operated this line is family owned and operated.  They offer daily car/passenger service with inside or outside seats.  One way fare is $9 adult/$15 car.  More information about the Kelleys Island Ferry can be found on their website - www.kelleysislandferry.com.

Today, our daughter (her husband had to work and couldn't make the day trip) came to join us on the island, and met us at the ferry dock in Marblehead, Ohio.  Once again, we decided to ride bicycles around the island, but also took a vehicle over just in case some riders tired or inclement weather arrived.

Inscription Rock
  Kelleys is a favorite place of ours to visit.  This island is the largest American island in Lake Erie, and bicycles, golf cars, and easy walking are the main mode of transportation. 

Our first stop was Inscription Rock located not far from the ferry dock.  This relatively flat limestone rock has very faint pictures of animals, birds, and people believed to have been carved by indians.  A protective roof has been built over the rock to try and preserve the sight from the elements. 

Our next stop was the Glacial Groves Memorial.  This area is billed as one of the world's largest and most spectacular examples of ancient glacial groves over 30,000 years ago!  The groves are easily viewed without too much climbing.  A walkway around the area makes for some spectacular views.

Glacial Grooves Memorial
  Informational plaques are placed around the walkway offering visitors a glimpse into the past and formation of the grooves.  This is really a wonderful place to visit.  There are places with picnic tables to enjoy a packed lunch.  Also, the memorial is located adjacent to Kelleys Island State Park with ample camping and picnic opportunities.  The area is managed by the Ohio Historical Society.  A section of these grooves was cut out and set to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC. 

From the grooves, the group pedaled or rode on to our lunch destination - Docker's - in the heart of the business area of the island.  This restaurant is very casual and offers open air dining on the lakeside.  They specialize in seafood dishes, and cook up a wonderful, juicy cheeseburger!  On weekends and Wednesdays during the tourist season, entertainment is offered on the patio.

Docker's
  Meals are reasonably priced and the food is excellent!  They also offer daily drink specials and local lake wines.  The service is always friendly.  You can't go wrong with a meal at Docker's located at the marina. 

After lunch, we wandered around the shopping/business area.  There are no chain stores on the island; only small family operated shops.  Shops include several clothing and shoes stores along with the general store, small grocery store, and other little knick knack shops.  Other restaurants offer good food and entertainment.  There is putt putt golf, a couple ice cream places, and a quaint little park for just watching the people go by.  Other tourist attractions include a winery, museum, and the State Park with a real nice sandy beach which is where we decided to spend the afternoon.

Kelleys Island State Park Beach
 

The beach at Kelleys Island State Park was voted "the best beach on Lake Erie" by our group.  The sand is soft and offers some shaded spots for those who prefer to stay out of the direct sun.  The sand stretches out into the water making for nice wading.  The little girls just enjoyed sitting in the shallow water splashing about.  Farther out the sand begins to drop off gradually until it is about 6' deep at the bouys.  Many people were enjoying the beach as there were several sand castles being built, lounge chairs occupied by those relaxing, and several enjoying beach activities.  Past the bouys, there were several boats anchored and jet skiis playing around.  This beach is excellent, but the facilities are only sufficient.

Marblehead Lighthouse
  The pit type toilets and lack of running water aren't exactly tops on the list of amenities.  There was a decent changing shelter, though.  We went for the beach and had fun playing in the sand!

Since it was late afternoon, we decided to head back to the mainland.  After saying good bye to Lesley, we decided to visit the Marblehead lighthouse.  It was discovered the lighthouse would be open for tours the next day, so we wandered around the grounds for a little bit, and headed back to the trailer for the evening. 

During the evening time, a couple swan and some Mallard ducks swam were swimming around the docks.  Some stale bread delighted us for about 30 minutes! 

PhinsAndGills says:
Such a FUN day!
Posted on: May 04, 2010
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Loading and Unloading the ferry
Loading and Unloading the ferry
Inscription Rock
Inscription Rock
Glacial Grooves Memorial
Glacial Grooves Memorial
Dockers
Docker's
Kelleys Island State Park Beach
Kelleys Island State Park Beach
Marblehead Lighthouse
Marblehead Lighthouse
More Glacial Grooves
More Glacial Grooves
Limestone Glacial Grooves
Limestone Glacial Grooves
The twins enjoying the view.
The twins enjoying the view.
Glacial Grooves, Kelleys Island
Glacial Grooves, Kelleys Island
Walkway with easy viewing of the g…
Walkway with easy viewing of the …
Adjacent Quarry
Adjacent Quarry
Ice Age Remnants
Ice Age Remnants
More Grooves
More Grooves
Climbing the rocks surrounding the…
Climbing the rocks surrounding th…
Posing pretty
Posing pretty
Marblehead Lighthouse
Marblehead Lighthouse
Grounds of lighthouse
Grounds of lighthouse
A slightly different point of view
A slightly different point of view
A popular fishing spot
A popular fishing spot
Area of Lighthouse
Area of Lighthouse
Inscription Rock State Memorial
Inscription Rock State Memorial
Information about Inscription Rock
Information about Inscription Rock
Hand feeding the swan?
Hand feeding the swan?
Mallards
Mallards
Yep, the swan is hungry!
Yep, the swan is hungry!
Pretty swan
Pretty swan
The mates
The mates
Kelleys Island
photo by: FishAtHeart