There’s a rusty grace in farmsteads that sit fallow for years, abandoned and slowly unraveling over time: dilapidated barns, wild grass-filled fields, decaying plows wedged in old furrows, forsaken mid-till. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is a gold mine for them, as are the North’s lesser-traveled byways. Valley Road, off M-72 northwest of Kalkaska, is a rambling drive through rolling farmland—some fostered, some long forgotten. Take our list of 25 Northern Michigan wonders wth you when you explore this spring, and fall in love with Up North all over again.

Photo(s) by Todd Zawistowski