Tag Archives: lighthouse

Lake Michigan Lighthouses in Winter: A Michigan Photo Gallery

Being part of a Michigan winter brings with it frigid temperatures and on-again off-again snow. Hanging out along the immediate Lake Michigan coastline takes it to another level. Lake effect snow and high winds off the lake make for a bone chilling experience.

I’ve gone over to various parts of such coastline over the years, in January usually, to capture winter’s rath. I’m fascinated with how it takes hold to the various lighthouses, piers and beaches which you will find plenty of each along Lake Michigan. Some of my favorite shots I’ve taken over the years, all bundled up, follow. So worth it! Well without further ado.

St. Joseph North Pier Inner Light, lighthouse along Lake Michigan

All smiles at the St. Joseph North Pier Inner Light.

St. Joseph pier along Lake Michigan

Gingerly walking on what amounts to be the largest ice block I’ve ever seen.

North Pier Outer Lighthouse in St. Joseph, Michigan

North Pier Outer Lighthouse in St. Joseph, Michigan.

Icue formations along side White River Light in Whitehall, Michigan

Mounds of ice on the pier alongside the White River Light.

Beach along Silver Lake Sand Dunes in Michigan

Snow and ice cover lakeside beach along the Silver Lake Sand Dunes.

Out on the open iced over pier in Muskegon.

Ice fishermen and I are out on the open iced over pier in Muskegon.

Capturing Michigan pier cat walk iced sculptures up close.

Capturing cat walk iced sculptures up close.

More iced over photography happenings in St. Joseph, Michigan

More iced over photography happenings in St. Joseph.

Holland "Big Red Lighthouse" in Michigan along Lake Michigan

Holland’s “Big Red” Lighthouse standing tall.

Little Sable Point Lighthouse near Mears, Michigan

Little Sable Point Lighthouse near Mears, Michigan.

Snow creeping up the Muskegon Breakwater Light

Snow creeping up the Muskegon Breakwater Light.

The frozen channel between White Lake and Lake Michigan

The frozen channel between White Lake and Lake Michigan.

Iced over bridge alongside Holland lighthouse and Lake Michigan

Iced over bridge and pier in Holland State Park.

Icy pier alongside White River Light, Michigan

Anyone up for skating down the Whitehall pier to Lake Michigan?!

Grand Haven pier and lighthouse in Pure Michigan

The Grand Haven Lighthouse is playing peekabo with the large ice formations.

Grand Haven State Park, Grand Haven, Michigan

Lighthouse from up-top the sand dunes of Grand Haven State Park.

A sunny winter day along Lake Michigan, capturing St. Joseph's two lights

A sunny winter day along Lake Michigan, capturing St. Joseph’s two lights.

South Haven beach, Lake Michigan

Out on the open South Haven beach at dawn.

New Buffalo Public Beach in Michigan

Winters view from New Buffalo Public Beach.

Lake Michigan from South Haven, Michigan

Panoramic, snow covered views of Lake Michigan and the South Haven lighthouse.

South Haven Lighthouse in Pure Michigan

Climbing my way toward the South Haven Lighthouse.

Iced over Muskegon's South Breakwater Light, Lake Michigan lighthouses

Muskegon’s South Breakwater Light is iced over.

Iced over Muskegon's South Breakwater Light

Love how ice sculptures can form, like on Muskegon’s South Breakwater Light.

South Haven Lighthouse along Lake Michigan during the heart of winter.

South Haven Lighthouse along Lake Michigan during the heart of winter.

Frozen over South Haven, Michigan lighthouse

Lakeside view of the lighthouse in South Haven. At least I think it’s a lighthouse.

Where is the pier catwalk? From St. Joseph, Michigan

Where is the pier catwalk?

Taking in the wintry blue waters of this Great Lake., St. Joseph. Michigan

Taking in the wintry blue waters of this Great Lake.

Grand Haven State Park Beach along Lake Michigan

Who is up for a walk on the windy, wintry Grand Haven State Park beach?!

Grand Haven, Michigan

Grand River, light poles, railings, and everything else frozen over in Grand Haven.

Pere Marquette Park in Muskegon

Snow filled view of both Muskegon lighthouses from Pere Marquette Park.

Have you had the chance to capture any lighthouses and/or coastlines in winter?

The Grand Haven Lighthouse and Pier from the “Other” Side

Standing up-top the sand dunes and staring out at the pier, the lighthouses and Lake Michigan in Grand Haven is my favorite spot in all of Pure Michigan. Each time I’m there I also walk the pier to its end passing by both lighthouses. While walking I always see people on the pier across the Grand River Channel fishing or walking.

With all the time I’ve been in Grand Haven I’ve never been over there. On recent road trip along the Lake Michigan coast I was hanging out at North Beach Park just north of town. I said to myself, now is my chance.

I took the short stroll down N. Shore Rd to North Shore Fisherman’s Pier. Immediately after parking in the small lot I was on the pier heading towards the small North Pierhead Inner Light. Low and behold there were fisherman and visitors walking the pier.

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Lake Michigan and Grand Haven shoreline from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Lake Michigan and Grand Haven shoreline from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

As I walked I looked over to the other side of the channel and it was cool to see everything from a different perspective from the dunes and the catwalk to the pier and two lighthouses.

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

It was a sunny day, but very windy. The waves were crashing onto the pier. People were stopping about half way down, myself included.

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Despite that, it was a memorable walk because I finally got to see the Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier from the “other” side!

Grand Haven Lighthouse and pier viewed from North Shore Fisherman's Pier

Tip: It’s a quick twenty minute drive to get here from the other side of the channel and downtown Grand Haven. While you’re there stop at nearby North Beach Park and the North Ottawa Dunes and make an afternoon out of it.

The South Haven Lakeshore By Day.

Up until now I had only been in South Haven, Michigan around sunset. This always made for beautiful and romantic views looking west out into Lake Michigan. On a recent day road trip though I set out to see what the area looked like during the day with the sun shining.

I made the trek towards the shoreline and South Beach just outside of downtown. A recommended place to capture the scene is from up in the hills overlooking everything on Monroe Boulevard. It was time to get out on the open path towards the edge of the hill soon seeing…

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

…the dunes, brush, beach and the blue, vast Lake Michigan. Off in the distance sat the pier and South Haven South Pierhead Light.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

I found myself capturing all of the same photos as before except to sunny skies and daylight. It was great getting a different perspective seeing more of the color of the sand, lighthouse and water. When here at sunset the sky always seems to dominate color-wise. 🙂

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

Anyone for a romantic picnic with those views on the sand and sometimes even in the lakes waters?!

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

Back up top the hill, you’ll find additional romantic opportunities on the park benches lining the street.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

It was now time to walk the pier, under and along the catwalk towards the red lighthouse.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

On the pier I continuously looking forward and behind. There is just something about walking and hanging out along the lake, with the sound of the water that relaxes you. Not seeing land on the other side makes me think I’m in a place far-far away along the ocean. 🙂

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

It was a fun afternoon checking out the South Haven lakeshore for the first time by day. Who knows what time of day, the year and what the weather will be like next time I come this way. Maybe it will give me an additional perspective of this scenic spot.

Checkout the post about my time here at sunset, also detailing more information about the lighthouse, catwalk and area: A Lake Michigan Lighthouse and Sunset in South Haven.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, beach

What beaches and town shorelines would you recommend checking out along Lake Michigan? Anywhere?

Michigan: Holland and “Big Red”, I’m back!!!

The last stop on my recent day of Michigan lighthouse, beach and park hopping along Lake Michigan was Holland. It followed Musekgon and Grand Haven. Being at Holland State Park, before on this visit I decided to capture some shots first out on the open sandy sidewalk heading towards the north pier.

Holland, Michigan, Holland State Park beach, Lake Michigan

The sand retreated off the sidewalk onto the beach as I got closer and I soon wound up on…

Holland, Michigan, Holland State Park beach, Lake Michigan

Holland, Michigan, Holland State Park beach, Lake Michigan

…the narrow bridge that lead to the pier.

Holland, Michigan, north pier, Lake Michigan

The end of the walking and North Pier Light were in sight.

Holland, Michigan, north pier, Lake Michigan

The narrow pier has no barriers and rocks on both sides. The wind had died down from earlier in the day so it was a stress free walk out on the open pier! 🙂

Holland, Michigan, north pier, Lake Michigan

The pier widens right before the light. I got some closeup shots.

Holland, Michigan, north pier light, Lake Michigan

Holland, Michigan, north pier light, Lake Michigan

Holland, Michigan, north pier light, Lake Michigan

Doing a 180, I see rocks up close, the path traveled and the popular and beautiful “Big Red” Lighthouse.

Holland, Michigan, Big Red lighthouse, Lake Michigan

On the walk back I captured some more shots of “Big Red” which sits opposite the Holland Channel.

Holland, Michigan, Big Red lighthouse, Lake Michigan

What is it with those park benches?! They’re everywhere I tell ya. Of course in a romantic spot. 🙂

Holland, Michigan, Big Red lighthouse, park bench, Lake Michigan

It was a great early afternoon walk reacquainting myself with “Big Red” and the beach, north pier and Lake Michigan in Holland. No doubt I will be back again soon.

To get more information on everything, as well as photos from my previous visits checkout Michigan: Holland State Park and the “Big Red” Lighthouse.

Checkout the fun I had at my previous stops on this day again in Michigan: Back to Grand Haven Lighthouse I Go and Michigan: Coastal Muskegon on a Winter Day.

What lighthouse, pier and beach setups have you come across in your travels that you would recommend?

A Lake Michigan Lighthouse and Sunset in South Haven.

Another evening, another stroll over to a lighthouse and Lake Michigan. This time the stop was in South Haven. I arrived at the South Beach right before sunset. What a great spot for a picnic.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

My primary motivation for coming here was to checkout the lighthouse and lake. The mix of clouds and sky on this evening, leading to a beautiful sunset, was an added bonus. I walked onto the south pier that ran alongside the beach and headed towards The South Haven South Pierhead Light.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

I looked towards the shoreline and beach as I walked.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

Others stood on the pier capturing photos as water from the lake waves kept hitting the payment. It was a chilly and windy evening. That just added to the scenery. The path towards the lighthouse took me underneath the catwalk. It is the original catwalk which links the lighthouse to the shore and is one of only four left in Michigan.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

I reached the end of the pier and 37-foot high lighthouse. The sky was getting more colorful by the moment.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

The current lighthouse became operational in 1903 and a station at this spot dates back to 1872. It marks the entrance to the Black River.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

Looking over to the right you can see the north pier light opposite. Another light that looks like a cigarette to me haha.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

There’s a splash! 🙂

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

Doing a 180 there’s the catwalk and behind the sunset lit town.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

The sun was almost down. I captured a few more pictures on the pier before heading back onto the beach to watch the sun go below the horizon. The orange colored sky! I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves. 🙂

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

I got back in my vehicle and headed onto the elevated Monroe Boulevard along the shoreline to capture some pictures from above. It was pretty dark at this point so I turned on the flash. There is South Haven pier and lighthouse off in the distance.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

Of course I ran into a park bench in a beautiful, romantic spot.

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

It was another great evening venture over to Lake Michigan, this time to South Haven. There is just something about lighthouses, the beach and a Lake Michigan sunset! 🙂

You can checkout some of my other Lake Michigan lighthouse explorations:
Michigan: St. Joseph Lighthouse and Tisconia Park.
Michigan: Holland State Park and the “Big Red” Lighthouse
Michigan: The Lighthouses of Grand Haven

South Haven, Michigan, Lake Michigan, lighthouse, pier, beach at sunset

What are some spots that you’ve loved capturing a sunset from in your travels or around home?