Michigan Public Radio interviews Heather Shaw and Jodee Taylor about the UPNORTH guide that's about more than cherries and sand dunes.


Whether you’re planning a visit to the Grand Traverse region, are new to the area or happen to be one of the rare “natives,” INSIDE UPNORTH is an indispensable and inspiring road map to all things wonderful to see, sip, explore, trek, and experience.


INSIDE UPNORTH is a bigger, better guidebook to the Northwest Lower Peninsula. It includes a unique collection of pure, magical escapes – often little-known nooks and crannies of rich delight, all across the Grand Traverse region.


The authors, combined, have more than two centuries of living in the area and bring that knowledge and expertise to each page.


Here are highlights:





INSIDE UPNORTH reviews local restaurants, bars, brew pubs and wineries so you can get the best tastes and sips north of Chicago.








INSIDE UPNORTH details all the exciting things the area offers for children of all ages, including a guided Adventure Tour of downtown Traverse City.







We’ve got the skinny on the best beaches, trails, rivers and races.


INSIDE UPNORTH also covers fishing, surfing, hunting, motorcycling, snowmobiling, skiing, kite boarding, fat biking, golfing and camping.






INSIDE UPNORTH has found a whole slew of stories covering the Native inhabitants to the first settlers, from the lumber era to the beginning of tourism. We also highlight area geology, agriculture, weather, wildflowers and birds.




INSIDE UPNORTH covers housing, schools, jobs and the hottest area industries.







Spread through INSIDE UPNORTH you’ll find Taylor’s Encyclopedia of Local Knowledge, where local author Jodee Taylor demonstrates everything from “How to Make Fudge” to “How to Find Morels” to “How to Pee in the Woods.”









INSIDE UPNORTH shows you all the trails, parks and beaches where you and your best friend can unleash the fun.














INSIDE UPNORTH has you covered.


Also included in INSIDE UPNORTH:


• Tours and Hangouts for Motorcyclists

• Fishing the Boardman, Manistee and Au Sable Rivers

• Surfing the Great Lakes

• The UPNORTH Music Scene

• Horsemanship Culture and Competitions

• Area Museums, Galleries and Antiques

• Tours of Leelanau County and Old Mission Peninsula

• Best Area Hauntings and Spooky Spots

• A Hunter’s Guide to Area Game

• Hiking, Skiing and Touring Sleeping Bear National

   Lakeshore • Short Reviews of Area Golf Courses

• Downhill Ski Resort and Cross-Country Trail Reviews

• Contributions from Local Artists and Authors

• Plus, a Complete 2017-2018 Calendar to Local Events




Review by Tom Powers of Michigan in Books


Inside Upnorth: The Complete Tour, Sport, and Country Living Guide to Traverse City, Traverse City Area and Leelanau County

by Heather Shaw, Jodee Taylor, Tom Carr


I like the way the amount of information on enjoying, appreciating, and seeking out the unusual in the Traverse Bay area and the Leelanau Peninsula has been crammed into this fun and informative book with a shoehorn. The authors even boast that this is a "complete guide" and challenge the reader "to find one as thorough."


Within, the reader will find walking tours of Traverse City, Sleeping Bear Dunes, guides to area golf courses, restaurants, the best coffee houses, craft breweries, hiking and skiing areas, farm markets, orchards, natural areas, and historic sites of interest.  I especially liked the list of 63 summer festivals and concerts in the wider area. Then there are the many how-tos or instructional entrees such as: How to Pee in the Woods, (the following pun was avoidable but I couldn't) How to Harvest Leeks, How to Parallel Park, How to Cast a Fly-Line (which it fails to do), How to Plow Your Driveway, and, in a mere two pages, How to Build a Canoe.


The book warns that global warming may be the end of the area's cherry orchards and affect the production of Maple syrup. It seems warmer weather makes Maple syrup less sweet. Fifty years ago it took 25 gallons of sap to produce a gallon of syrup, today it takes 50 gallons. The danger of the Enbridge Pipeline also gets a few lines.


Almost every page in the book has the potential to surprise. A lot of the surprises come from the authors' intimate knowledge of the area but some are the result of the book's strange organization and lack of an index. Thumbing through the book I came upon a nude beach but neither chapter headings or an index led me there or helped me find the page again. On one page the book warns that Lake Michigan can be very dangerous for swimming because of rip tides. Dozens of pages later there is a warning about the danger of the big lake's many sandbars. Their distance offshore can be misleading and often swimmers will find themselves in water over their heads long before reaching the shallower sandbar.  Poor swimmers can find themselves in dire straits. These two warnings should be on the same page. I was disappointed in not finding a guide to private campgrounds, Traverse City's food trucks, or a comprehensive listing of the best swimming beaches in the area.


The greater Traverse City area and Leelanau County hold a world of adventure, an indelible scenic beauty, great food and drink, enough shopping to max out a Platinum credit card, and hordes of people who come for all of the above. If you don't believe it, just thumb through this attractive, entertaining, and one-of-a-kind guidebook.


Inside Upnorth: The Complete Tour, Sport, and Country Living Guide to Traverse City, Traverse City Area and Leelanau County, by Heather Shaw, Jodee Taylor, Tom Carr. Mission Point Press, 2018, $16.95

Mission Point Press    •     2554 Chandler Road    •    Traverse City, Michigan   •   49696                     TEL. 231-421-9513