Lighthouses

South Manitou Lighthouse

The lighthouse of South Manitou was built in 1839 and was in operation until 1958. It is now owned by the National Park Service as a part of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. In 2009, the South Manitou light was relit as a part of a project made possible by the partners of the National Lakeshore and the new National Park Service Centennial Initiative. If you go, you will take the ferry (www.leelanau.com/manitou) from Leland, an attractive harbor town which is about 27 miles north of the National Lakeshore's Visitors Center. The ferry trip will take you by "The Crib," a 75-foot light tower which was built in 1935 to mark the spot where the bottom of Lake Michigan suddenly rises to within 20 feet of the surface. For nearly 50 years, a three-man crew lived in the tower and took turns working for two weeks and going ashore for a week. This light is now automated and is not open to the public. In addition to seeing The Crib, you may hear its horn on a foggy day or night.

For more information on the South Manitou Lighthouse, visit www.sleepingbeardunes.com/info/area_southmanitou.