May 9, 2010

Beach Bumming - NBCB Part 1

This is another venture that resulted in many photos. One lazy afternoon, Dave and I headed to the beach but not the one here in town. Oh no. We had to become tourists and drive 30 minutes south to New Buffalo.

Mini Lighthouse Marker

Lake Michigan

Not that I mind driving to the beach there. One of my favorite restaurants is there, The Stray Dog, which is where we lunched. But back to the beach before my mind wanders too far. Due to the number of photos this post is being broken into at least three parts. Part One is general photos. Part Two will be macros. Part three will be shore birds.

Part One: The Beach
Upon arriving at our destination, we trudged up the boardwalk. Southwest Michigan is known for it's dunes but they are susceptible to damage, both caused by man and nature. If you are visiting our dunes, please stay on the designated paths and walkways.


Beach grass, photo taken from path.

As we make our way down to the shore the wind picks up. At this point I am glad I wore my jacket. Brr. Here we are getting blown away. No I do not have squished eyes! I was squinting to keep the sun, wind and sand out of them.


Jessica (Me)

There was quite a commotion going on off shore. This crew is dredging the channel so that boats can get in and out without running aground. Dredging pretty much means this boat scrapes up the sediment from the bottom of the channel and moves it somewhere else, usually the beach area. This is vital in our great lake not only for the shipping industry but our tourist industry as well. We have hundreds of people pour into our lake side towns to spend the weekend, go fishing or just enjoy the lake and beaches. If they can't get their boats in and out, they would go elsewhere.


Also it replenishes the sand that has washed away with the tide. Yes Lake Michigan is large enough that is effected by tides.

Lake Michigan's golden sand

So that is all of my general photos. Stay tuned tomorrow when I share some macros. In the meantime, here are some interesting facts about Lake Michigan and it's sister lakes.

Michigan has the longest freshwater shoreline in the world.

Michigan has more shoreline than any other state except Alaska.

Michigan has more than 11,000 inland lakes and more than 36,000 miles of streams.

Michigan includes 56,954 square miles of land area; 1,194 square miles of inland waters; and 38,575 square miles of Great Lakes water area.

Standing anywhere in the state a person is within 85 miles of one of the Great Lakes.

Forty of the state's 83 counties adjoin at least one of the Great Lakes. Michigan is the only state that touches four of the five Great Lakes.

The Petoskey is the official Michigan state stone. It is found along the shores of Lake Michigan.

The Mackinac Bridge is one of the longest suspension bridges in the world. It connects the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. It spans 5 miles over where Lake Michigan and Lake Huron meet. It took 3 years to complete and was opened to traffic in 1957.

Michigan ranks first in state boat registrations.

Michigan has 116 lighthouses and navigational lights.

Michigan is the only place in the world with a floating post office. The J.W. Westcott II is the only boat in the world that delivers mail to ships while they are still underway. They have been operating for 125 years.

Some of the longest bulk freight carriers in the world operate on the Great Lakes. Ore carriers 1,000 feet long sail Michigan's inland seas.

The Great Lakes hold one-fifth of the world's supply of fresh water.
-From various Sources



Rue said...

Great stats on Michigan - I love that you are always within 85 miles of a Great Lake!

Glad you had fun at the beach - even if it was a little cold. It's so great to get out in the fresh air!

erythisis said...

So, did you get any grass-cuts while you were playing around on the dunes? :p

The Law Office of Levinson Axelrod said...

Wonderful facts about Michigan. Thanks a lot for bestowing the knowledge.

Anonymous said...

Very eye-opening post Jessica. Your photo of the lake offers the most beautiful blues. Hard to believe a lake could be so sea-green in color. The sand also looks like it belongs more on a seashore than a lakeshore.