Sunrise #1,117 at Marquette’s Orehenge

Sunrise 1117 by Bugsy Sailor

Sunrise 1117 by Bugsy Sailor

On his Twitter, Michigan’s Sunrise King Bugsy Sailor shared a phenomenon that I’d never heard of – Orehenge! He writes: 

Twice a year, for a few days stretch, the sun rises down the center of the historic Marquette ore dock.

And oh boy, does the community loves it! Just as they should. But my introverted self, loving my mornings of solitude and meditation, has to overcome a lot of anxious energy to walk into a crowd during my most cherished time of the day.

Orehenge, as it’s affectionately called, falls in November and January, where the sun is really seen at sunrise. From my January data over three years, there is less than a 20% chance of seeing the sun at sunrise.

There’s more observations & photos of this very cool seasonal happening and the crowd that showed up @BugsySailor on Twitter. For sure check out his Twitter for more & if you’re low on Upper Peninsula swag, his UP Supply Co is a great source!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

#TBT: Walking with the Icefoot on Agate Beach

Winter morning on Agate Beach by Gary McCormick

Winter morning on Agate Beach by Gary McCormick

Here’s a special Science Term Throwback Thursday from January 14th 8 years ago!

Ernest W. Marshall talks about a common winter feature along considerable stretches of Great Lakes shorelines, the Icefoot, a narrow fringe of ice attached to the coast:

Air and water temperatures must be sufficiently low before an icefoot begins to form. The conditions favorable for icefoot formation are broad open shorelines gradually sloping below water level, and facing so that wind-blown spray is carried inland toward the shore to freeze. The character of growth of an icefoot differs during different periods of the winter. During the course of the winter the icefoot may suffer periods of denudation alternating with periods of accretion. The development of an icefoot can be held at one stage by the early freezing of fast ice offshore. An icefoot can be composed of any combination of frozen spray or lake water, snow accumulations, brash, stranded icefloes, and sand which is either thrown up on the icefoot by wave action or is blown out from the exposed beaches.

Observations of the icefoot along the shorelines of Lakes Superior and Erie indicated that the moderately steep portions of the shore were characterized by narrow terraces composed of frozen slush and brash thrown up by storm winds. The outer edge of this icefoot was often cusp-like in form, resulting from the mechanical and melting action of the waves. The inner portions of the cusps acted to concentrate the wave action, forming blowholes which threw spray back on the icefoot.

You can click to read more.

Gary took this photo at one of my favorite places, Agate Beach on Lake Superior in Grand Marais. In the distance is Grand Sable Dunes & the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. See more in Gary’s Grand Marais Michigan gallery including a shot of a staggeringly huge ice mound & view and purchase his work at Footsore Fotography.

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Before the Plows Come By

Before the Plows Come By by Ann Fisher

Before the Plows Come By by Ann Fisher

Ann captured a nice winter mood in this photo from a late December evening in Marquette. See more in her 2021 UP gallery on Flickr & thanks to all the hardworking plow drivers around the state!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

A New Blue at Adventure Mine

Blue Mineral at Adventure Mine

Blue Mineral at Adventure Mine

WWJ-Detroit shares that a bright blue mineral has been discovered at a mine on the Keweenaw Peninsula that so far has people perplexed:

The mysterious mineral was found on rock walls in the historic U.P. Adventure copper mine in Greenland Township, south of Lake Superior.

On Sunday, officials from the mine have posted pictures on Facebook of the mystery substance found on rock walls, but the bright blue material has not been positively identified.

Officials said they believe it to be a secondary mineral caused by a reaction with air and water. The mine operated from 1850 until 1920 and 11 million lbs. of native copper has been extracted.

Definitely visit the Adventure Mine website for information on their tours & the history of the mine.  In the Facebook post referenced, Adventure Mine said “This bright blue mineral has not been positively identified as of this post but it is a secondary mineral that is caused by a reaction with air and water. It was found on the 3rd level in a small stope.” A stope is an excavation in a mine working or quarry in the form of a step or notch & the comment thread has some very interesting ideas as to what the mineral could be.

My own personal pet theory based solely on how cool it would be is that this reaction is due to the same mineral that creates the unique iron ore slag known as Leland Blue

PS: After some discussion with Adventure Mine operators, I realize that I took my kids on a tour there 20 years ago. Super cool & a highlight of our visit to the awesome Keweenaw Peninsula – definitely put a trip to the copper-iest of Copper Country on your Michigan bucket list!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Waterfall Wednesday: Reany Creek Falls

Reany Creek Falls by Aaron Strouse

Reany Creek Falls by Aaron Strouse

Waterfalls of the Keweenaw entry for Reany Falls says in part:

With a location close to a well-known Marquette destination (Dead River Falls) Reany Falls is a surprisingly photographed and popular waterfall. Composed a few small drops along a narrow creek, the main focus is a three-way split plunge nestled in the bedrock that is viewable from the road’s bridge above. Smaller drops are located above these falls, although the narrow little canyon makes viewing them difficult.

Aaron took this photo back in August of 2017. See more in his massive Michigan waterfalls gallery on Flickr.

More Michigan waterfalls on Michigan in Pictures!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

The name is Falls, Bond Falls

Misty Bond Falls by Yanbing Shi

Misty Bond Falls by Yanbing Shi

The GoWaterfalling entry for Bond Falls near Paulding in the Upper Peninsula, says (in part):

Bond Falls is in the western U.P. on Bond Falls Rd, east of Pauding MI. This is the most impressive waterfall in Michigan with the possible exception of Tahquamenon Falls. The main drop is 40 feet high and 100+ feet wide. Above the main falls are a series of cascades and rapids that must drop a total of 20 feet.

The water level is controlled by a dam, and a steady flow over the falls is maintained for scenic reasons. Of course during the spring melt the flow is much higher.

Bond Fall is a Michigan State Scenic Site. The site was renovated around 2003. The old parking area was upstream of the falls, and a steep concrete stairway led to the base of the falls. The new parking area is near the base of the falls, and a level boardwalk leads you to prime views of the falls. The area is not quite as wild looking as it once was, but it is accessible to everyone. The trail on the east side of the falls is still wild with some steep rocky climbs. There are other trails that go off into the woods, and there are campsites nearby.

In addition to being very picturesque, this is a very popular waterfall, and unless you visit early in the morning or in winter, you are going to have a lot of company.

Bringing back this November 2014 photo I featured of Bond Falls for another look! See more in Yanbing Shi’s Landscape gallery on Flickr.

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Waterfall Wednesday: Kakabika Falls

Kakabika Falls by Neil Weaver

Kakabika Falls by Neil Weaver

Travel the Mitten has a great entry on Kakabika Falls that says (in part):

The Ottawa National Forest covers more than 990,000 acres of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and is a popular spot for outdoor recreation, camping, and wildlife viewing. The forest is also home to many waterfalls including Kakabika Falls, a set of cascades on the Cisco Branch of the Ontonagon River. These falls can be reached by a short drive north of the Watersmeet/Marenisco area, and a short, easy hike into the woods. The setting here is peaceful and there is a good chance you won’t encounter other travelers when you visit.

The tallest drop of Kakabika Falls is maybe 8 to 10 feet (most of the drops range from 1 to 5 feet), but this waterfall is more about the sum of its multiple drops than one large drop. The river makes a series of S turns here, and the trail closely parallels the river providing many great vantage points of each drop. As is the case with most waterfalls of this size, it is always best to visit in the spring or after decent rainfall. In dry summer months, we have found that there was barely any water flow here.

Click through for more including photos, map & directions from a really excellent website for Michigan travel ideas!

Neil shared that this is one of the many magical places in the Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, something that one look at his Instagram is all you need to see the truth in that! You can also follow Neil Weaver Photography on Facebook and view & purchase prints (including this one) on his website.

Many (many) more Michigan waterfalls on Michigan in Pictures!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Thanks for the wilderness, Congressman Dale Kildee!

Sturgeon River Gorge I by David Mayer

Sturgeon River Gorge I by David Mayer

This week longtime Congressman Dale Kildee passed away. Kildee, uncle of current Flint Representative Dan Kildee, represented Flint for over 30 years earning the nickname “the Cal Ripken of Congress.” He was involved in many efforts including some vital early childhood bills and (of course) auto industry support, but one interesting thing that I learned from writer David Dempsey is that Dale was the sponsor of the 1987 Michigan Wilderness Act which created 10 State Wilderness Areas protecting nearly 100,000 acres of old growth forest, dunes, lakes, and rivers including Sturgeon River Gorge.

Thank you Dale for your work on the behalf of Michigan’s wild places! Click for a map of all 18 of Michigan’s Wilderness Areas.

David took this back in October of 2012 in the Sturgeon River Gorge Wilderness. See more in his Porcupine Mountains gallery on Flickr.

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Autumn’s Rainbow at Rainbow Falls

Rainbow Falls on the Black River by Michigan Nut Photography

Rainbow Falls on the Black River by Michigan Nut Photography

Rainbow Falls is the last of five waterfalls on the Black River in the Upper Peninsula. You can read all about Rainbow Falls & the Black River (and see another shot of these falls by John) on Michigan in Pictures.

As you can see, the Yoop is looking pretty beautiful right now!! See more on the Michigan Nut Facebook & view and purchase prints at Michigan Nut Photography!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon

Make your heart as a lake

Make your heart as a lake by Fire Fighter's Wife

Make your heart as a lake by Fire Fighter’s Wife

“Make your heart like a lake with a calm, still surface and great depths of kindness.”
-Lao Tzu

Beth took this shot at beautiful little Lake Antoine near Iron Mountain. See more in her 100x 2021 gallery on Flickr!

Support Michigan in Pictures with Patreon