06-Jun-2002 -- Lake Michigan, between South Mantou Island and the mainland
Yesterday, the lake was a tempest. Today it's a lamb. Sun shining and Lake Michigan flat as a pane of glass. Great day for a long paddle. Camped at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore. The camp site was on the beach at Glen Haven, about 7 miles due south from the confluence point. It was possible to paddle the kayak directly to the confluence except for one factor. One would have to paddle most of the seven miles in a major shipping lane. Very dangerous. So I chose to paddle off to Pyramid Point first and then sprint out the 3.8 miles across the lane to the confluence. The confluence point itself was not in the shipping lane.
Two north bound freighters passed while I was on the water but neither of them were any trouble.
The confluence point is beautiful. North Manutou Island to the north, Pyramid Point to the east, South Manitou Island to the west and the famous Sleeping Bear dunes to the south. The following Indian lore about the area is taken from the official Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore web site.
The Legend of the Sleeping Bear
"Long ago, along the Wisconsin shoreline, a mother bear and her two cubs were driven into Lake Michigan by a raging forest fire. The bears swam for many hours, but eventually the cubs tired and lagged behind. Mother bear reached the
shore and climbed to the top of a high bluff to watch and wait for her cubs. Too tired to continue, the cubs drowned within sight of the shore. The Great Spirit Manitou created two islands to mark the spot where the cubs disappeared and then created a solitary dune to represent the faithful mother bear."
After all this effort the visitor lost most of his pictures due to technical difficulties. He went back and took some new views (pictures #3-#5), great effort!