Fact Du Jour – August 13, 2019 – Crisp Point Lighthouse (Michigan)


Crisp Point Lighthouse – located on Lake Superior between Munising and Whitefish Point.

If you described the Crisp Point Lighthouse, located between Munising, MI and Whitefish Point, as being “in the middle of nowhere,” that wouldn’t be an inaccurate description! The lighthouse is only accessible by a series of gravel roads (some only one lane wide) that can become washed out in inclement weather. I visited the lighthouse in 2010, and almost as soon as I’d arrived…the rain kicked in. Which made the visit very short! As any Michigan traveler already knows, one mile of gravel road in poor condition can take quite a bit of time to cover! What was essentially a 15 mile trip took about an hour to complete (one way). In the winter, a good number of roads like these aren’t even plowed.

In 2015, two sisters became stranded on one of these roads for two weeks when their Ford Explorer got stuck in some snow. They survived by eating snow, eating Girl Scout cookies and eating cheese puffs – you can read more about that story here.

The lighthouse, erected in the early part of the 20th century, helped illuminate what was described as the “shipwreck coast” along Lake Superior. In addition to providing light to help ships navigate dark waters, many lighthouses also provided lifesaving stations – where men would be on call to help distressed ships and their crews during storms. Crisp Point also had a lifesaving station. The lighthouse was nearly destroyed by erosion, but recent efforts to save the building helped restore the building to nearly pristine condition. Michigan folks really, really love their lighthouses!

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