Time for Tulip Time

Yellow Tulips

Yellow Tulips, photo by E. Benson

Holland’s annual Tulip Time festival returns May 7-14, 2016. They have 4.5 MILLION tulips in Holland and are reporting about 30% of tulip bloom right now – just about perfect. Stay tuned through their Tulip Tracker.

Here’s a cool video showing how they plant Windmill Island with 55,000 tulips in a matter of hours.

E took this at Tulip Time in 2009. View her photo background bigilicious and see more in her Tulip Time Festival 5/2009 slideshow.

More tulips and more spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures!

Skyline Trail at Ludington State Park

Ludington State Park Skyline Trail

Ludington St. PK, Skyline Trail 2, photo by Jerry Herrendeen

Visit Ludington’s page on Ludington State Park’s trails says:

The Skyline Trail runs along a tall sand dune ridge, on the south side of the river between the footbridge and Hamlin Dam. The trail begins at the west end of the parking lot and exits onto the Sable River Trail. This trail is completely elevated, made even higher by an extensive wooden boardwalk system. Several vistas let you look out over miles of sand dunes and Lake Michigan. On a clear day, you can see 20 miles to the Silver Lake State Park Sand Dunes. On the back side is an area where you can leave the boardwalk and run up and down the steep slope of this sand dune.

Read on for more about other trails at the park and click for the official Ludington State Park page.

View Jerry’s photo background big and see lots more in his Moods of Lake Michigan slideshow.

More Ludington and more spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures.

Fishermen on Crystal Lake

Fishermen by Noah Sorenson

Fishermen, photo by Noah Sorenson

Noah took this on Crystal Lake a month ago. Back when it was Spring and not Winter II.

View his photo background bigtacular and see more in his slideshow.

More spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures.

A Tree in the Fog

A Tree in the Fog

A Tree in the Fog, photo by Joel Dinda

Joel took this photo on April 4, 2014 in Eaton County’s Roxand Township. View it background bigilicious and see more in his The Showcase slideshow.

More spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures!

Anticipation

Anticipation

Anticipation, photo by Doug Jonas

Who’s looking forward to summer. Anyone?

View Doug’s photo background bigtacular and see more of his spring photos.

Waabi-Maang (White Loon)

Waabi-Maang White Loon

Waabi-Maang, photo by Mark Smith

Here’s a shot from last week in my hometown of Leland by Mark Smith who writes:

The tribal fishing boat Waabi-Maang (White Loon) fires up for another fishing season in Leland, Michigan. I have been fooling around with a vintage lens here .. quite a trip! (if you look closely you can almost see the storm coming – 8 inches of snow tonight. Thanks, Spring.)

View Mark’s photo background big and see more in his slideshow.

PS: The lens is a Contax Sonnar 2890 – here’s another photo “Branches to Branches” that Mark took with it.

Branches to Branches

 

Take a look around at Wagner Falls

So embarassing! I didn’t hit “Publish” this morning!!

Wagner Falls with Marsh Marigolds

Wagner Falls (n2c_112-2256), photo by Gowtham

I am totally ignoring the Snowy Unpleasantness outside my window this morning.

The State of Michigan’s page on Wagner Falls Scenic Site near Munising has a map and also lets you take a 360-degree look around with Google Trekker.

This scenic waterfall is nestled amongst virgin pine and hemlock trees. There is a small parking area and a half-mile trail with an observation deck overlooking the falls.

Gowtham adds:

Yet another can’t miss it thing in an area that’s filled with can’t miss it things, Wagner Falls lends itself to a very easy and short hike through the woods. While the picturesque falls take the cake, plethora of wild flowers along and off the trails (through Spring, Summer and may be even Fall; e.g., Gay Wings, Trout Lily) are an added bonus!

View his photo background big and see more in his slideshow.

PS: I’m pretty sure the flowers in the foreground of this May 2012 shot are marsh marigolds.

Must be a Monday: Be Yourself Blue Heron Edition

Great Blue Heron Leaving Roost

Great Blue Heron Leaving its Roost, photo by Rodney Campbell

Hope you have a wonderful week, even if you look a little goofy at times. ;)

The Michigan Natural Features Inventory entry for Great Blue Heron Rookeries explains:

The great blue herons in Michigan are largely migratory, with almost all leaving the state during the winter months. Most leave by end of October and return in early to mid-March.

The great blue heron is mostly a colonial nester, occasionally they nest in single pairs. Colonies are typically found in lowland swamps, islands, upland hardwoods and forests adjacent to lakes, ponds and rivers. Nests are usually in trees and may be as high as 98 ft. (30 m) or more from the ground. The platform like nests are constructed out of medium-sized sticks and materials may be added throughout the nesting cycle. Nests are usually lined with finer twigs, leaves, grass, pine needles, moss, reeds, or dry gras. The same nests are refurbished and used year after year.

Most great blue herons return to southern Michigan heronries in mid-March although a few may remain through the winter if there are areas of open water. Courtship and nest building commences from early April in southern Michigan to early May in the extreme northern portions of the state. Both sexes are involved in the nest building process with males primarily gathering sticks from the ground, nearby trees, or ungarded nearby nests.

More about Great Blue Herons on Michigan in Pictures.

View Rodney’s photo background bigtacular and see more in his Birds slideshow.

 

Know your Michigan Counties: Kalkaska County

The Mountains of Kalkaska

The Mountains of Kalkaska, photo by Dale DeVries

The State of Michigan has 83 counties, and since I got a number of comments asking for more about our communities, I’ll try and profile them all … sooner or later. Here’s some information via Wikipedia about Kalkaska County, Michigan:

The first settler in Kalkaska County was an Englishman named William Copeland, who purchased land in the northwest corner of the county in 1855. The county was set off in 1840 and called Wabasee until 1843. The name Kalkaska is thought to be a Chippewa word meaning flat or burned-over country. An alternative theory is that this is a neologism or neonym created by Henry Schoolcraft, originally spelled Calcasca. Some theorists suggest this is word play. Schoolcraft’s family name had been Calcraft, and the Ks may have been added to make the name appear more like a Native American word.

Logging was the first important industry. The discovery of substantial deposits of oil and natural gas resulted in the construction of a processing plant by Shell Oil Company in 1973 and a major economic boom in the community.

Kalkaska Sand, the state soil of Michigan, was named after the county because of the large amounts deposited in the area from the glaciers in the Ice Age. Kalkaska County has over 80 lakes and 275 miles of streams and rivers. Much of the county is marshland. County elevation ranges from 595 feet (181 m) to about 1,246 feet. This makes it one of the more uneven counties in the Lower Peninsula.

The Pere Marquette State Forest covers much of the county. Glaciers shaped the area, creating a unique regional ecosystem. A large portion of the area is the so-called Grayling outwash plain, which consists of broad outwash plain including sandy ice-disintegration ridges; jack pine barrens, some white pine-red pine forest, and northern hardwood forest. Large lakes were created by glacial action.

The population was population 17,153 in the 2010 census and you can click to Wikipedia for more, visit the official Kalkaska County website, read about their big, annual event, the National Trout Festival (April) on Michigan in Pictures, and click to see Kalkaska County on a map!

Dale writes:

“With abundant snow cover yet and temperatures around 65 F, fog forms in almost white out conditions near large snow fields! This can lead to near zero visibility in a matter of seconds and makes for some amazing photographs!”

View his March 9th photo background bigilicious and see more in his massive Fern Ridge Pictures slideshow.

More spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures.

Old Cabin In Spring

Old Cabin In Spring

Old Cabin In Spring, photo by David Marvin

I’m going to declare that the statute of limitations on posting another photo from David Marvin expired at 7:38 AM today.

Check his photo out background bigilicious and see more of his photos from the Brevort Lake area. Be sure to follow his blog too!

More spring wallpaper on Michigan in Pictures … and then let’s bring on the summer!