Weekend Escape
Off the Interstate

Lighthouse Tour


Sometimes it's fun to have a little "project" when we go on a short trip like the one to Michigan over Labor Day weekend.  This year's project was to see and photograph as many of Lake Michigan's east shore lighthouses as we could.



Now I will say that Lake Michigan lighthouses are not nearly as big, pretty, or scenic as the beautiful lighthouses I'm used to seeing along the Atlantic.  But they serve their purpose, alerting boats approaching the shoreline.  According to the map I printed off before we left, there are 18 lighthouses along Lake Michigan's eastern shoreline...we ended up seeing 10 of them.

This first one was certainly anti-climactic (and in truth, a bit ugly...), St. Joseph's North Pier lighthouse is the first one inside the Michigan state line.



Going north, next up was the South Haven South Pier.  Since it was a gorgeous Labor Day weekend, there were big crowds at all the beaches.



Holland Harbor lighthouse saw oodles of boats motor past it that day...



Continuing north along the lake, the terrain changed and we found ourselves surrounded by sand dunes.  I knew there were sand dunes up north, but I still found myself surprised!



Grand Haven lighthouse...



Lake Michigan!



Muskegon South Pier lighthouse...



...with its lovely harbor...



...and busy sandy beach.



Many of the lake homes had sand as their lawn...how fun is that?! (Except on a windy day....)

After we left Muskegon, we realized we better high-tail it to our B&B before they rented out our room to someone else.  So we skipped the next 3 lighthouses and headed toward Ludington.



We checked out Ludington's North Pierhead lighthouse after dinner, and then decided to save the rest for the following day.




Since the B&B didn't serve breakfast until 9 am. (and we are always up at least by 6:00!), Kim and I decided to beat the crowds and head to Ludington State Park at daybreak (and before breakfast) to see the Big Sable Point lighthouse there.



Such a peaceful lovely morning!



But we totally struck out on the Big Sable Point lighthouse search.  We weren't paying $11 just to enter the state park and then hike 2 miles there then 2 miles back just to take a photo.  So we parked just outside the park and thought we might be able to walk the shoreline far enough to at least get a picture.  

But I wasn't up to a long walk and every time we passed a sand dune there was another one to take its place, so I sent Kim on ahead to see what he could see and we decided to give up.  Another trip, maybe...but my body just isn't up to a long hike these days.



Despite my slight disappointment, I did enjoy some beautiful views before the crowds took over...



Always loving the seagulls...




What a spectacular morning!



After breakfast, we were off on our lighthouse hunt again.  This one is the Manistee North Pierhead.



The Frankfort Breakwater lighthouse...



Point Betsie looked like a more traditional lighthouse, although not nearly as tall as I'm used to...



Manning Memorial lighthouse was a baby of a lighthouse...and ended up being our final lighthouse of the tour.  We tried to go to the Grand Traverse lighthouse, but again you have to pay to go into the park to see it so we decided to pass.  Not enough time or energy this trip...

Maybe someday we can catch those 8 we missed...on our next...

...lighthouse tour.




Terri Chapman

Oh Terry...you just took me on stroll down memory lane ...and that Big Point Sable lighthouse at Ludington...and Little Point Sable at Silver Lake (which are all in the state parks that we love so much)..I have many pictures for you :)


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