Fall, Already? the Leaf Peeping Season Sneaks up Quickly, Make Your Plans Soon!

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Last updated: 10/05/2016
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates
  • Minimum stay:2-7 nights
  • Internet:Yes
  • Pets considered:Yes
  • Wheel chair accessible:Yes

Property description

Our summer is booked, however, September and October can be incredible and Thistledew makes a perfect home base for leaf peeping or winery tours. Picture yourself escaping the pressures of work and life, retreating to a serene haven where life is easy and the toughest decision is where to find the most colorful leaves or the county's best burger. Whether to drive or hike, or later in the year, ski. Perhaps throw another log on the fire, and finish that great book you're reading, you could even put on a jacket and see if the sunsets really are more beautiful in the fall or winter. Lots, or little to do. Your well behaved four footed family is welcome to join you.
We are 15 minutes from several well marked nature trails, 20-30 minutes from the Manistee National Forest, and about an hour from Traverse City. Bring your skis, snowshoes, warm boots, or favorite books and board games. Try out the local breweries or local wines, cash in the change you have been saving at the casino. The possibilities are limitless, the choices yours.

Bring your camera to capture the incredible snow scapes, the famous Pt.Betsie Lighthouse, secluded beaches, or even the turkeys in the back yard.

For something a bit more sedate, The Little River Casino is 30 minutes away. If dining delights you Traverse City is becoming a 'foodie' destination. Storm Cloud brewery is only 25 minutes away with local brews and unique light food choices.

Please DO check the calendar function as weekends fill quickly. Or, come mid-week and find out what peace and tranquility are all about.

Off season, (Fall, Winter, Spring) at Thistledew could be just what you are looking for. (We've even dropped our rates!) Thistledew awaits, everything in place. The sunsets can be amazing. Check our calendar, see if there's something for YOU!

Summer sandcastles, sunshine, golf. Fall leaf peeping, salmon fishing, walks in the woods. Winter snow sports, s'mores by the fire, weekend get-aways. Spring morel mushroom madness, fly fishing, and check out the casino. These are just a small taste from your to-do list when you stay at ThistleDew, your sanctuary for peace and serenity away from the hustle and bustle of life, OR, your home base for all the best activities Michigan has to offer. ThistleDew is a remodeled Craftsman style farmhouse overlooking Lake Michigan. A minute's walk (or drive) finds you on 600 ft of private beach. Other than during peak season, the deserted beach offers long walks, serene sunsets and solitude, or for the more adventurous; kite boarding, kayaking, and windsurfing without crowds or hassles.

Forget buying salt and pepper, paper towels, firewood or laundry soap. Thistledew comes stocked with the comforts of home. Enjoy cooking in the updated kitchen, raid the spice rack and be creative, or head to one of the nearby restaurants for Friday fish fry, Asian cuisine, or gourmet delights. The first floor includes a master suite with a shower for two, a screened front porch (sleeping space for adventurous children, perhaps?), a living/dining area with a beach stone fireplace, a half bath, and laundry facilities tucked away in a closet. The back deck is a perfect place to sit with your coffee and watch for deer or read a good book. Take one step down to your picnic table and fire pit for evening enjoyment. With a short ramp, the first floor is handicap friendly. The second floor’s two comfortable bedrooms with double beds enjoy sunset views. It has its own bath with shower and an open space for games, DVD viewing or additional sleeping space. A book exchange, decks of cards, and jigsaw puzzles are waiting for those rare indoor, quiet days.

When you tire of sleeping in, lazing on the beach, and have finally been able to put down your engrossing mystery, wander outside and discover nature. Feel free to walk, snowshoe, or ski the “back 40”. Or, check out the surrounding National and State Forests, nature preserves, rivers and lakes for hiking, mountain biking, mushroom hunting, boating, swimming, or fishing. If solitude is not your preference, opportunities abound. Arcadia Bluffs (a world class) golf resort is less than 3 miles away. Crystal Mountain Resort (25 minutes) offers year round activities (snow sports, summer mini water park, alpine summer sledding, golf) as well as new gym/work out facilities and spa offerings. Little River Casino is only 20 miles away for the gamblers in the group. Interlochen Arts Academy (a 30 minute drive) offers concerts and entertainment year round. Antiquing, quilt stores and unique shopping draw those who enjoy investigating nooks and crannies. And, this only begins to scratch the surface, so many choices so little time.

We look forward to meeting you. Living next door, we delight in sharing our slice of paradise with you and your family. We hope this will be a vacation destination you will return to year after year, building those incredible memories you will look back on with special warmth. Your well behaved, four footed family can feel free to enjoy a vacation here as well, with room to run or swim in your company. Our dog Ace, a handsome Golden Retriever, (just ask him!), welcomes playmates, four footed as well as two footed.

Keywords: private beach, house, ski, snowshoe, Fall colors, Crystal Mountain, golf, fishing, pet friendly, woods, year round, fireplace, Arcadia Bluffs, casino, Manistee, Frankfort, Traverse City, hiking, dunes,snowshoe,Lake Michigan,dog, pet,

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Property Type

  • Farmhouse

Accommodation Type

  • Vacation Rental


  • Guests Provide Their Own Meals


  • Minimum Age Limit For Renters:

    If you have questions regarding this please ask....moreless

  • Alternative Lifestyle
  • Children Welcome:

    We do have a booster chair with tray as well as a stool with back that could be used at the table. Some toys games available....moreless

  • Non Smoking Only
  • Pets Considered:

    We love pets! If you wish to bring more than 3 there will be a $50.00 -$100.00 minimum additional cleaning fee. Our cleaning crew takes great pride in keeping the dust bunnies under control....moreless

  • Wheelchair Accessible:

    The downstairs is handicap friendly with a short ramp to the deck to enter. Doors are wide, shower is no step. ...moreless

Bedrooms: 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 10, Beds for 6-10

  • Convertible bed(s)


  • Blue beedroom: 1 double, 1 baby crib

    Lovely lake view from the alcove in this upstairs bedroom....moreless

  • Master suite: 1 queen

    Handicap friendly with a no step shower for TWO! ...moreless

  • Yellow bedroom: 1 double

    Upstairs room with a view of the old fountain and the lake....moreless

  • Activity area: 1 sleep sofa /futon

    Great place for the kids, comfy Q-futon, couch and VCR....moreless

  • Queen size Beds (1) The queen bed is in the master suite., Double beds and crib are located in the upstairs bedrooms. There is a twin mattress stashed under a bed as well. Please let us know ahead. We do have a pack-n-play as well. A comfortable queen size futon, is in the upstairs area. The sleeping porch can be used with an inflatable mattress when the weather is comfortable. ...moreless

Bathrooms: 2 Bathrooms, 1 Half Bathroom

  • Master bath: toilet, shower

    Handicap friendly, no step shower for two!...moreless

  • Downstairs powder room.

    Cute nook across from hidden washer/dryer. ...moreless

  • Upstairs full bathroom: toilet, shower

    Former tiny bdrm, has a dressing table, and full shower....moreless

Other Amenities

  • 600 ft private beach , outdoor fire ring, firewood, picnic table. Ready to go, no need to buy common household items such as mustard, ketchup, TP, or coffee., Walking path out the back door, board games, puzzles, book exchange/library, ...moreless


  • Books:

    Lending library, or feel free to exchange paperbacks. Many of the old Hardy Boys collection. ...moreless

  • CD Player
  • DVD Player:

    There is a selection of family friendly DVD's available....moreless

  • Games:

    A collection of some of the basics. Cards and dominoes. Ask if you don't see it....moreless

  • Television:

    Reception is limited as there is no cable in the area. We do have DVD's. ...moreless

  • Toys:

    Some for little kids provided. Ask about other options for indoor/outdoor play....moreless

  • Video Library:

    A nice selection of DVD's is available as well as a 'Red Box' rental in nearby (6 mi) Bear Lake....moreless


  • Churches
  • Cinemas
  • Health/Beauty Spa
  • Library
  • Live Theater
  • Marina
  • Museums
  • Playground
  • Restaurants
  • Winery Tours

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/Bank
  • Fitness Center
  • Groceries
  • Hospital
  • Medical Services

Leisure Activities

  • Antiquing
  • Beachcombing
  • Bird Watching
  • Boating
  • Gambling Casinos
  • Horseback Riding
  • Miniature Golf
  • Scenic Drives
  • Shopping
  • Sight Seeing
  • Walking
  • Wildlife Viewing

Location Type

  • Beach View:

    While you cannot see the beach you CAN see the lake and the incredible sunsets out the front windows of Thistledew....moreless

  • Lake View:

    Lakeview Rd, a gravel, natural beauty road, separates ThistleDew from the beach. A SHORT walk down the road takes you to a driveway to the beach. This is quiet country road....moreless

  • Rural:

    If you enjoy nature this is the place. Deer and wild turkeys cross the back yard. Bird seed attracts a variety of birds and small critters. We even see the occasional Bald Eagle....moreless

  • Ski-Out:

    Cross country ski or snowshoe out the back door if you don't need to have groomed trails. DO check for snow conditions, we may not have enough by the lake. ...moreless

  • Water View:

    With help from a professional tree service the views of the lake and sunsets are breathtaking. Watch big ships on the horizon, fishing, or sail boats dot the lake view....moreless

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • Cross Country Skiing
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Fly Fishing
  • Freshwater Fishing
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Kayaking
  • Mountain Biking
  • Paragliding
  • Parasailing
  • Pier Fishing
  • Racquetball
  • Sailing
  • Skiing
  • Snowboarding
  • Snowmobiling
  • Surf Fishing
  • Surfing
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Water Skiing
  • Water Tubing
  • Wind-Surfing


  • Dining:

    Table seats 6, indoors. TV tables for 4 more. Also a card table and chairs available. Outdoor area, one picnic table, you may also borrow ours for larger groups. ...moreless

  • Dining Area
  • Seating for 6 people


  • Air Conditioning:

    Goethermal heat/cooling makes this an economical summer option....moreless

  • Clothes Dryer:

    Part of the hidden closet set....moreless

  • Computer Available:

    If you forget yours or need a quick check of something you can borrow my laptop or the public library (6mi) has FAST computers available 5 days/wk. Free....moreless

  • Fitness Room / Equipment:

    Ask, or use the walking/jogging track that 4 miles of country road provide. The beach provides a great workout. ...moreless

  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating:

    Geothermal, home is heated year 'round. Very comfortable....moreless

  • Linens Provided:

    Cool, crisp cotton, or, snugly flannel sheets for those cooler nights....moreless

  • Living Room:

    Lovely antique couch and chairs, comfortable. Beautiful stone wood fireplace. Your dining area is here as well. Great view. ...moreless

  • Parking:

    Next to the house. No garage....moreless

  • Parking Off Street
  • Parking For RV/Boat/Trailer:

    Yes, please let us know if you will need it. ...moreless

  • Telephone:

    Land line provided as many cell phones have limited connectivity. We ask that you use a charge card for long distance calls. Local calls are free to the surrounding area....moreless

  • Towels Provided:

    Standard linens provided for kitchen and bathrooms. Please bring beach towels and blankets if you wish. ...moreless

  • Washing Machine:

    Front loader, closet stack able....moreless

  • Wireless Internet:

    Usually available on OUR front porch or lawn (chairs provided) . May be available from house. We are working to provide more reliable service. Always good at local libraries, free, 6 miles....moreless

  • Wood Fireplace:

    There is a supply of wood available for both indoor use and out....moreless


  • Catering Available:

    If you REALLY want something catered ask, we will see what we can arrange. If you'd like to walk in to a pot of chili and fresh bread ask.....especially in the off season. We might be able to work something out!...moreless

  • Coffee Maker:

    New for the 2016 season, a Keurig coffee maker and a starter supply of coffee and tea. ...moreless

  • Cooking Utensils:

    New cookware 2010. If you can't find what you need...ask, we probably have it and would be happy to let you use it....moreless

  • Dishes & Utensils:

    Enough for 10 people. All the basics are here. Let us know if there is something missing we can loan you whatever....moreless

  • Dishwasher:

    New when home was remodeled....moreless

  • Ice Maker
  • Kitchen:

    The stainless appliances were installed when we completed our remodel. The stove is electric and there is an ice-maker in the refrigerator....moreless

  • Microwave:

    New when home was remodeled....moreless

  • Oven:

    Full oven with stove....moreless

  • Pantry Items:

    Most of the basics are here, flour, sugar, spices. We try to keep it stocked for use. ...moreless

  • Refrigerator:

    Features ice maker and in-the-door water....moreless

  • Stove:

    Ceramic, wipe off top, full oven. Electric....moreless

  • Toaster:

    Yep, makes toast....moreless


  • Deck / Patio:

    Composite deck off the back of the house, one step down, or ramp at the end....moreless

  • Lawn / Garden:

    Yes....not very level in the back. ...moreless

  • Outdoor Grill:

    Weber charcoal grill, new in 2016 Weber gas grill. ...moreless



Write a review 5
from 25 traveler reviews
Rental basis: Per property
Dates Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
Fall/Winter 2016
Sep 10 - Jan 1, 2017
2 night min stay
Winter/Spring 2017
Jan 2 - May 26, 2017
2 night min stay
Summer 2017
May 27 - Sep 9, 2017
7 night min stay

Fall/Winter 2017
Sep 10 - Dec 31, 2017
2 night min stay
My Standard Rate
2 night min stay

Additional information about rental rates


  • Tax Rate 6%


There is a 6% MI use tax that will be added to your rental fee.

The cleaning fee IS included in the basic rental amount.

There is an additional cleaning fee for more than 3 pets of $50.00-100.00 dependent upon the number of extra pets.

All rates are subject to change until deposit is confirmed.

Owner's cancellation policy:

Policy available by contacting owner when booking

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Last updated: 10/05/2016
Check availability
23 Available
21 Unavailable
22 Today
23 Selected dates


16 Miles
Nearest Airport
Manistee Blacker Airport (MBL)
6 Miles
Nearest Barpub
Grill 44 (Bear Lake)
48 Miles
Nearest Ferry
Ludington to Milwaukee
3.04 Miles
Nearest Golf
Arcadia Bluffs
100 Miles
Nearest Train
Muskegon MI
1.33 Miles
Nearest Motorway
M 22
6 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
Several bar/restaurants
20 Miles
Nearest Ski
downhill/ cross country Crystal Mountain
0.01 Miles
Nearest Beach
Directly below you.... 3 min walk (down)

Car: Recommended

Mushroom hunting, casino, canoeing, photography, alpaca farm, geocaching, fishing charters, several farmer's markets, a real drive in movie, summer concerts in local parks, and frequent local 'festivals'.


Owner info

Year Purchased: 1970

About the owner: I have been vacationing here since I was small, built sandcastles, hiked the woods with my Grandfather and loved the area enough to move here. After raising two wonderful sons, numerous dogs, cats, 2 fawns, and a few other critters while teaching in nearby Bear Lake I 'retired' in 1999. The next job was remodeling this rental property which has been an education, frustration and ultimately a joy for my husband and myself. We enjoy the outdoors, photography,geocaching, reading and volunteering with Red Cross and our church. We are easily distracted by all the opportunities this area provides, so retirement is never boring.

Why the Owner Chose Bear Lake, MI, USA:
My grandfather purchased this property in the 50's so I have MANY wonderful memories of summering here. Living or vacationing here provides a different perspective.We are delighted that so many families return and we can watch their children grow up with their own memories. Life is still a bit slower, a tad more laid back. Choices abound, friendships flourish, time may actually be slower. You know you're enjoying your vacation when you have to ask what day it is. While we cherish the peace and serenity of walking miles of beach and seeing no one, we also appreciate the availability of anything we really want within easy driving distance.

The Unique Benefits at this Farmhouse:
This area can let one feel isolated from the hustle and bustle of daily life, from the pressure to DO anything,(some cell phones STILL don't get good reception, no real TV, but the VCR works...) It's easy to get lost in the serenity of nature and silence, to escape the lights of civilization and truly see the constellations at night. All without being miles away from the nearest grocery store or golf course. Golf or ski some of Michigan's finest, canoe riffles on the river, or just soak in the leisure, read a book, hold hands with a loved one. Dare the slopes or the casino, land that world record brown trout. The choice is yours. We also try to keep Thistledew stocked with the basics you would find at home. No need to bring or purchase staple items such as dish soap, mustard and ketchup, or firewood. If it's not there, wander over and ask. We'd be happy to give you a cup of sugar or loan you our book of Wildflower identification!

Contact us

Speaks: english

Guestbook comments from the owner

1 of 2


  • Fall sunset lights things up.

    Fall sunset lights things up.

  • Welcome to Thistledew, treats for all and those things you need to know!

    Welcome to Thistledew, treats for all and those things you need to know!

  • Newly recovered (100 yr old!) couch and repainted living area.

    Newly recovered (100 yr old!) couch and repainted living area.

  • Comfort awaits, the master suite, downstairs.

    Comfort awaits, the master suite, downstairs.

  • Looking out your upstairs window, life IS good.

    Looking out your upstairs window, life IS good.

  • The perfect spot for morning coffee, evening sunsets, or adventurous sleeping.

    The perfect spot for morning coffee, evening sunsets, or adventurous sleeping.

  • Ace, learning how to kayak. We aren't wet, yet.

    Ace, learning how to kayak. We aren't wet, yet.

  • Your walkway to sand and surf.

    Your walkway to sand and surf.

  • Ace, your four footed host, showing off the Fall beach.

    Ace, your four footed host, showing off the Fall beach.

  • To cook or not to cook, that is the question.

    To cook or not to cook, that is the question.

  • The firplace is just waiting for a cool night.

    The firplace is just waiting for a cool night.

  • The "Blue" bedroom.

    The "Blue" bedroom.

  • Hidden away, so you won't have to pack as much.

    Hidden away, so you won't have to pack as much.

  • The Great Pyramid of Pierport. Just one possible beach activity.

    The Great Pyramid of Pierport. Just one possible beach activity.

  • Heading home after a beautiful day leaf peeping.

    Heading home after a beautiful day leaf peeping.

  • C'mon in to warmth and a cup of hot chocolate!

    C'mon in to warmth and a cup of hot chocolate!

  • Our contented guests express themselves with magnetic 'poetry'.

    Our contented guests express themselves with magnetic 'poetry'.

VRBO #287029

This listing was first published here in 2010.

Date last modified - Sunday, October 23, 2016

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Member since: 2010
Speaks: english
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  • Response time Within a few days
  • Response rate 100%
  • Calendar last updated 10/05/2016

(231) 889-3294 (Michigan, USA)

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Fall, already? The leaf peeping season sneaks up quickly, make your plans soon!

Bear Lake, MI, USA #287029

3 BR  2.5 BA  Sleeps 10

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