Saturday, February 15, 2014

McGulpin Point Lighthouse

My husband and I were in Mackinaw City visiting the popular Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse when I saw a sign for another lighthouse nearby.  We followed the signs a short distance out of the city and came upon a delightful lighthouse called McGulpin Point lighthouse.  This lighthouse is beautifully restored and has been furnished in the d├ęcor of the times.  The grounds are lovely and visitors are welcome to climb the tower and tour the house.   I first photographed the lighthouse from the parking area and then went inside to learn a bit of history about the light and then I climbed the tower for a view of the area.

  I discovered that this lighthouse was among the first in the area and helped to guide ships through the Straits of Mackinac.  The shipping had dramatically increased with the opening of the Erie Canal in 1825 and by the 1850's there was a real need for lighthouses in the area.  Congress approved the plans for McGulpin point lighthouse in 1854 and it was lit for the first time in 1869.  It was in service until 1906 when it was no longer needed because of the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse

After visiting the lighthouse and the gift shop, I decided to take a walk down the trail in back of the lighthouse.  I had seen the "Big Rock" advertised so I wanted to walk to the water to see what it was about.  The trail was only about 1/2 mile but it was on a rather steep incline at times.  It was a beautiful walk down through the woods and ended up on the shore of Lake Michigan.

When I got to the shore and found the rock, I was surprised.  It was literally just a big rock.  The rock is said to be 33.8 feet in horizontal circumference and weighs 54 tons.  Other than the size there was really nothing remarkable about it.  I took a look and enjoyed the view of the Mackinac Bridge in the background and then made my way back up the hilly trail.  I was able to capture this photo of McGulpin lighthouse on my way back up.
Stop by and visit my Squidoo pages on lighthouses at Lake Michigan Lighthouses
You might also be interested in hearing about my adventures in photography on Review This

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Presque Isle Lighthouses

Located on Presque Isle near Alpena in Upper Michigan you will find two beautiful historic lighthouses. In September of 2013 my husband and I took a drive along the Lake Huron coast and visited these lighthouses. We were traveling along Grand Lake Rd and we found a sign that took us off the main road and onto Presque Isle. When we got to the end of the road we turned right and found the Old Presque lighthouse.

  This lighthouse was first put into use in 1840. It is one of the oldest lighthouses still standing on the Great Lakes. The thirty foot tower is opening for the public to climb from May through October. From the tower you can get a view of Lake Huron and the coastline. The lighthouse is an interesting looking structure and definitely has an old feel to it.  Some people claim it is haunted.
Old Presque Isle Lighthouse

After photographing Old Presque Isle lighthouse we went back up the road about a mile and we came to New Presque Isle lighthouse. New is a rather relative term for this lighthouse which was built in 1870.

The grounds to the lighthouse also include a keeper's house that is not attached to the tower. It was built in 1905 and has been restored into a very interesting museum. There is also a building that now houses a gift shop.

When we arrived at this lighthouse I thought it really looked familiar. The top of the structure and the railings were painted a green color much the same as the Seul Choix lighthouse that I had seen on Lake Michigan. Upon further research, I found they were constructed by the same architect during the same time period. Here is a photo I took of the New Presque Isle lighthouse.  

For more information on my travels to Michigan lighthouses stop by my Squidoo pages at Michigan Upper Peninsula Lighthouses and Lake Huron Lighthouses