Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Traveling around Lake Michigan: Day 12, June 21, 2011

On the Road Again Tuesday June 21 to visit the White River Light Station.

People had told us the curator has interesting stories to share.  Yes, indeed she did.  She has been taking care of the Light Station since she graduated from college and has been there 28 years.  She talked about the history of the area and the light station, about Fresnel Lens and about her maintaining the buildings.

 Fourth Order Fresnel Lens, the original lens of the White River Light Station.  There are seven sizes (orders) of Fresnel lenses.  The 1st order is the largest and they decrease in size to a 6th order.

Life Ring from the Edmund Fitzgerald ore carrier.

This is a "sit in Bretches" life buoy.  When seas were too rough to rescue people by using a boat, a rope was shot out to the disabled ship or boat.  Those rescued would come to land in this type of buoy.

Next stop was the Great Lakes Naval Memorial and Museum.  We toured the submarine, USS Silversides.  This is the most famous surviving submarine of World War II.   She sunk more ships (30 Japanese vessels and damaged 14) and took down more tonnage that any other surviving WW II submarine.  The first appendectomy every performed on a submarine by a Pharmacist Mate was performed in the ward room and depicted in the movie Destination Tokyo.


A torpedo housed in the crew's sleeping quarters.

                                               Salt water depth to keel gauge
                                                                  Dive station
                                                       Step up and over, watch your head.
A photo of a submarine with polar bears checking it out.  

 We learned so much history about submarines in the 2 story museum.

The USCGC McClane W -146

During Prohibition this Coast Guard vessel was used to enforce Prohibition.  After Prohibition it was used for search and rescue as well as law enforcement.  During World War II it was used to patrol the Bering Sea off the coast of Alaska.  During the was McLanerwas outfitted with a one pound cannon, 50 caliber machine gun and depth charge racks.
                                                 Crew's sleeping quarters
                                              Crew's dining room
Keewatin Maritime Museum in Saugatuk
 Keewatin Ship was launched in 1907 for the Canadian Pacific  Railroad.  It was a luxurious ship for its time. It boasted running water and electric lights. The ship had 105 staterooms on two decks. Seven deluxe suites had private baths.  A time in history preserved with 

There are 10 staterooms furnished with clothes and items from 10 decades.

 The dining room had gold leaf around the ceiling as did most of the public areas.  Throughout the ship there is mahogany paneling as well as stained glass windows and hand carved panels.
                                               The "Ladies Room" was 30 by 30 feet.
 The ballroom served many purposes other then being a dance area. 
We realized we were only 3 1/2 hours from home.  By 6:30 we were home from another spectacular and informative trip.  

Monday, June 20, 2011

Traveling around Lake Michigan: Day 11, June 20, 2011

On the Road Again Monday June 20, but first we went hiked the Island Trail and the Lost Lake Trail in Ludington State Park.  http://www.visitludingtonstatepark.com/stories/ludington_state_park_trail_guide_michigan

 What a cute raccoon peeked around from a tree after we had passed.

But the rare treat was to first hear sounds like blocks of wood clacking.  Then we saw two sandhill cranes.  Considering how noisy they were we thought there have to be some little ones around.  Sure enough we saw two little ones.  One crane seemed frustrated that the little one wasn't getting on the way down the hill to the pond.  The adult crane kept picking up leaves seemingly to say to the kid, "come on, get going."  Eventually they were down the hill and we could take the trail where they had been.
                                                    Is this photo upside down or right side up?
Little Sandpoint Lighthouse is called the cinnamon stick because of the red brick.  http://www.visitludington.com/stories/little_sable_point_lighthouse_silver_lake_sand_dunes_lake_michigan
 It was foggy when we were atop the Lighthouse and got more foggy before we left.
USS LST 393 Veterans Museum in Muskegon, MI.  This Landing Ship Tank is an ocean going ship capable of shore to shore delivery of tanks, amphibious assault vehicles, and troops. I you recall the movie Saving Private Ryan, this ship was on Omaha Beach and trucks and soldiers departed from it.


                                             Sleeping quarters on board.
                                                  Capt. Phil

                                              World War II Jeep with 50 Cal. Machine Gun.
                                                                 Chain for the anchor
                                 This flag was flown on board on D-Day 1944 at Omaha Beach.
            Many exhibits and historic facts are on display.  This is the touching Missing Man Table.

We camped at P.J. Hoffmaster State Park.  After supper we took a leisure walk along the beach of Lake Michigan.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Traveling around Lake Michigan: Day 10, June 19, 2011

   On the Road Again Sunday June 19.  Happy Father's Day, Phil and everyone.
Point Bessie Lighthouse didn't open till noon so we continued on the way.  

To Gravity Hill, off of HWY. 22, east on Joyfield Road, turn south by this church.  
Go to the bottom of a slight hill, put the car in neutral and the vehicle will go backwards up the hill."  It did!!!  What an unbelievable feeling.

                  Next stop:  Manistee to tour a Coast Guard Ship and S.S. City of Milwaukee
             The 180-foot-long cutter was launched Sept. 1, 1944. The ship's primary duties were                                  maintaining buoys, lighthouses and other navigational aids and breaking ice during the winters.
Heard stories of many rescues.  Table was given to the Acacia after w rescue.  Beautiful wooden inlay.
                                 S.S. City of Milwaukee was used to transport passengers
                                       and 30 railroad cars from ports in WI to ports in MI.
                        There were four rows of tracks, each row 8 cars perfectly positioned.

               If the railroad cars were not loaded right the ship could and this one did....tip over!
                                    The ship could also cut through the ice of Lake Michigan.
                                    Map showing the ports for shipping the railroad cars.
                                                    The ship's lounge area for passengers.
                                                A cabin.  Overnight stays are available.
                                       A chair, not wicker but hemp, very heavy and sturdy.
We camped at Ludington State Park and hiked the 3 mile round trip to the Big Sable Point Lighthouse.
                                  On a hike after supper we came upon a deer near our walkway.