ANOTHER SUNDAY, ANOTHER afternoon road trip.

Maybe this stuff that’s been plaguing the world since late February is not all bad. It has at least put me and my lovely wife in an almost weekly mood to hit the road to see another part of the north country.

So far this summer, Lake Superior has seen much of us and we have seen much of Gitche Gumee. This last Sunday, it was time to visit the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park.

For those who haven’t seen this magnificent piece of unspoiled land bordering Lake Superior from Presque Isle Campground to 20-some miles further east at Union Bay Campground, you have missed out on something special. It is the most rugged country in Michigan and it is one of the state’s crown jewels of Lake Superior country, along with Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore over Munising, Mich., way.

We started this trip by heading up the Chaney Lake Road to Wakefield, Mich., thence north to Presque Isle Campground adjacent to, you guessed it, the beautiful Presque Isle River.

Like the Black River and its waterfalls north of Bessemer, Mich., to the west, you don’t get a look at the falls of the Presque Isle without some sweat and heavy legwork up and down the gorge bordering the river.

From the picnic area parking lot it is a short walk to the crest of the gorge, then down many steps to either take the left fork to a hanging suspension bridge crossing the river just up from Lake Superior or to the right to look over the beautiful series of falls farther upstream.

After our heavy rains of the past week, the water was roaring through the basalt and Nonesuch Shale outcrops hemming in the surging river. Tinted brown by tannin supplied by lots of cedar and hemlock, the river looks much as it did 1.5 billion years ago, when the groundwork for it was laid, with a little extra weathering and wearing of rocks.

It was good just standing for a short while along the river, feeling the coolness and breathing in the scents of water, hemlock and cedar.

Heading east, we meant to walk into Greenstone Falls on the Little Carp River, but apparently half the population of Michigan and much of at least a dozen other states had the same idea. The parking lot was overflowing so we decided to head for Lake of the Clouds.

There we took a short stroll along a handicapped-accessible boardwalk to get to the edge of the 500-foot-deep gorge at the bottom of which lies Lake of the Clouds. My wife, who is even more unsteady when it comes to heights than I am, maintained her lookout position behind the sturdy posts of the boardwalk.

I walked to the end of the boardwalk and beyond, up to the top of a rugged rock outcrop where the view of the lake and high backbone of the Porkies to the south has to be seen to be believed or fully appreciated.

I did not do what one couple I guessed to be in their 60s did. They ventured to within maybe 2 or 3 feet of the sheer cliff drop-off where they posed for each other for photos with the lake and gorge for a backdrop. Personally, I like staying alive better than getting that close to a cliff edge for the sake of a photo.

I don’t know why we do it, but as we have for longer than either of us can remember, after a quick tour around Union Bay Campground, we stopped at the little country outpost store adjacent to the campground entrance for a soft-serve cone. The stuff can’t hold a candle to genuine ice cream, but we do it anyway and as always, we fully enjoyed the guilty pleasure.

The long shoreline east of Union Bay is a fantastic place to get down to the big lake itself. We found an empty turnout and took in the absolute power of a windy day at Lake Superior. The waves weren’t huge, but the 2-footers rolling in had our dogs baffled at first.

After a tentative attempt or two, Gordie, our big-headed and sometimes empty-headed yellow lab, decided it was great fun plunging through the breakers to fetch sticks. I’m not sure he had a clue about them tossing him around, but he seemed to be having fun testing them.

Molly, a much wiser 111⁄2-year-old golden, had no fear of the waves, but she decided going in knee deep was far enough.

After that, there was just one more stop. A couple miles south of Silver City, Mich., on the way to Bergland, Mich., there is a small park on the Big Iron River. I have seen Bonanza Falls during drought periods when children played in the pool below the tallest drop, a 10-footer.

There would be no playing anywhere in the Big Iron on this day. Roaring fast and heavy, blood red with clay, it raged over the shale rocks for the entire 100-foot width of the river. Gazing out at it, admiring and respecting its power, the Bonanza stop was a perfect way to end our outing.

This was our fifth trip since May to Lake Superior this year.

I doubt it will be our last.