Eighth Great Lakes Lighthouse Expedition
August 20 – 24, 1989
Lake Michigan – Door County, Wisconsin
August 20, 1989, Sunday
- 8:40 am
- Left Home. Made stops for gas, $, rest area and donuts.
- 1:05 pm
- Arrived at Mackinaw. We had lunch at Lighthouse Park near the Bridge.
- 5:30 pm
- Arrived in Menominee. Drove to North Pier Light. It is a red light tower on a white house with a range light. Looked like there may have been a catwalk at one time. We drove around Menominee and Marinette.
- 6:50 pm
- We checked in at the Roadhost Motor Inn in Menominee and had dinner at the Ponderosa nearby.
August 21, 1989, Monday.
- 8:30 am (CDST).
- Left the Roadhost Motor Inn in Menominee, MI. A little cool this morning at 63 but we’re optimistic and we’re dressed in our shorts as the forecast looks good for today.
- 8:35 am
- Arrived in Marinette, WI. Drove down County Road BB and then some back roads so we could view the Peshtigo Reef Light out in the Bay. We stopped for a few picture at 9:00 am and left at 9:10 a.m.
- 10:20 am
- We took County Road J near Suamico and saw a light out in the Bay which we believed to be Long Tail Point Light. WRONG! The Long Tail Point Light is on an island peninsula.
- 10:30 am
- It has warmed up and is hot in the sun. A woman who has lived in the area a long time pointed out the stone structure, which is all that remains of the Long Tail Point Light. It was difficult to see because of the sun and trees. It has been moved from its original spot. Mrs. Callman showed us an oil painting her friend did from a photograph.
- 11:40 am
- Stopped for lunch at Bay View Park in Green Bay. We walked into the park near the water and decided the first light we had seen was the Green Bay Entrance Light. WRONG AGAIN! Bay View Park is nice, with amusement rides. We left the park at 12:30. We headed north on Hwy 57 and from there saw what we finally believe to be the Green Bay Entrance Light. "Thing" with black bottom we first thought was GBEL must be a marker. There are several "things" out in the water. Difficult to know what they all are. We stopped again after about 2 miles and took more pictures. Left 12:45.
- 1:50 pm
- Arrived at Sherwood Point Lighthouse at the entrance to Sturgeon Bay. This was the last manned lighthouse on the Great Lakes and was automoated in 1983. There is a keeper’s dwelling on the property with a sign marked "closed – NO visiting hours." Someone may live here but there was no one around. A martin birdhouse looked just like the lighthouse.
- 2:30 pm
- Arrived at the Sturgeon Bay Canal Light. It’s a steel tower structure at a Coast Guard Station. Out on the pier is the Sturgeon Bay Canal North Pierhead Light. It’s a red house with a catwalk. The short canal was dug out by the traders to connect it to Sturgeon Bay, shortening the 100 mile trip around the Door Peninsula. (Getting it’s name from "Deaths Door.") The canal connects Lake Michigan and Green Bay. We stopped at 3 art galleries. No luck yet in finding a lighthouse painting.
- 4:00 pm
- Arrived at the Baileys Harbor Lights. The Front Range Light is on Ridge Road and the Rear Range Light is back in the woods. They were deactivated in 1969.
- 4:40 pm
- Arrived at the Cana Island Light. We were able to walk over the causeway. Sometimes the water is covering the rocks. There are keepers living there and visitors are encouraged between 10:00 am and 5:00 pm. There is a detailed history of the Lighthouse for visitors to read and it is being restored by the Door County Historical Society. We left shortly after 5:00. Had dinner at the Edgewater Motel. We enjoyed a Scandinavian Fish Boil. Good dinner. Did some driving back and forth between Ephram, Fish Creek, Peninsla State Park and Egg Harbor. We walked to the shore but the clouds were hiding the sunset. Drove back to Fish Creek and got gifts for the kids, Marge and a necklace for Diana. We were back to the motel by 9:20 pm.
August, 22, 1989, Tuesday
Cloudy, overcast but reports are that it is to clear off.
- 8:55 am
- Left the Mariner Motel.
- 10:15 am
- Took the ferry from the Northport pier and arrived on Washington Island at 10:50.Drove to the north side of the island to catch the ferry to Rock Island State Park. We were just a few minutes late and missed the ferry, so we ate our lunch – tail gate fashion.
- 12:00 pm
- Took the ferry to Rock Island and hiked to the Potawatomi Lighthouse, about a 2 mile hike. This light is said to be the oldest light in Wisconsin. It is in the process of being renovated. We tried to make it back to catch the 1:15 ferry, but Diana fell on the path bruising her knees and gaining a few aches and pains. We got back to the dock area and toured the "Boat House." We learned a little about the Thoradsun Estate which built some of the stone buildings. The "house" was never begun. We sat and enjoyed the view in the bay. It’s a beautiful summer day – sunny, warm (not hot) and breezy.
- 2:15 pm
- Took the ferry back to Washington Island. We found Schoolhouse Beach – very rocky and Sand Dunes Beach – very sandy. We visited an art gallery and a tavern owned by a Lighthouse "nut." Lots of paintings and photographs on the walls. Unfortunately the owner was not there.
- 3:45 pm
- Got in the ferry boat line. We got on the ferry at 4:05. Left at 4:15.
- 4:45 pm
- We arrived at the Washington ferry boat dock. About 23 cars at one time can ride the ferry. On our ferry rides were were also able to see the lights on Plum Island and Pilot Island. We had dinner at Kenneany’s restaurant, went to a few shops and headed back to the Mariner Motel in Egg Harbor.
August 23, 1989, Wednesday
- 10:00 am
- Left the Mariner Motel in Egg Harbor. We stopped at a few art galleries.
- 11:20 am
- Entered the state park on our way to Eagle Bluff Lighthouse.
- 12:00 pm
- Arrived at the Lighthouse Museum and took the 12:00 tour ending at 12:30. Cost was $3.00. Very interesting. We ate our lunch at the Nicolet Bay Beach in Peninsula State Park. We left there at 1:20. Checked out several galleries and left the area at 3:10.
- 3:55 pm
- Arrived at the Algoma Pierhead Front Light. It’s a red cylinder with a red blinking light and black catwalk. It’s located on the north pier. Left Algoma at 4:05.
- 4:25 pm
- Arrived in Kewaunee. The Kewaunee Pierhead Light is a house with a tower on the end of the north pier. We took pictures from Pioneer Park. We took one picture and then had to go buy film. Back to the pier for more pictures. Left at 5:25.
- 5:55 pm
- Arrived at Rawley Point Light in the Point Beach State Forest. Left lighthouse at 6:10.
- 6:30 pm
- Arrived at the Two Rivers Light. This little red light building was a gift to the community when a new tower was built. It has been placed on a tower and looks quite different than the picture in The Northern Lights book. Left Two Rivers at 6:45 pm.
- 6:55 pm
- Arived at Manitowac Breakwater Light. Don walked out onto the Breakwater for pictures.
- 7:35 pm
- We followed a very nice fisherman who led us through the town to the south breakwater where Don was able to get some more pictures. (We never would have found it on our own.) The sun was setting behind us and it may be too dark for the pictures to turn out. Ate at the Pizza Hut and left Manitowac at 8:40 pm . We drove to Sheyboygan.
- 9:20 pm
- We arrived at the Parkway Motel in Sheyboygan and spent the night.
August 24, 1989, Thursday
- 9:35 am
- Left the Parkway Motel in Sheyboygan, WI. Drove downtown and arrived at the Waterfront area.
- 9:50 am
- Arrived at the Breakwater Light. We walked out to the end of the South Pier. The light was on the North Pier. Not a very attractive light – red cylinder. Got ice and gas and left at 10:30 am.
- 11:05 am
- Arrived at the Port Washington Breakwater Light. We walked out onto the Breakwater and had our morning shower! Quite windy and lots of waves splashing over the wall. Left Port Washington at 11:35.
- 12:15 pm
- Arrived at the Milwaukee North Point Light at the corners of Wahl and Terrace. There is a spot in Lake Park nearby where we could have lunch.
- 12:50 pm
- Arrived at the Breakwater area in a Marina parking lot. We had lunch after buying chips and film. Oops, wrong spot for pictures. We headed further into the city. Found a spot near Festival Park to take pictures of the Milwaukee Breakwater Light (it’s a red blinking light – a white house on end of breakwater.) and the Milwaukee Pierhead Light. We meandered our way through parts of Milwaukee most visitors don’t get to see and drove right to the little red lighthouse – Pier Head Light – which also gave us a great view of the Breakwater Light. We left Milwaukee at 2:15. We stopped in South Milwaukee for our first Dairy Queen of the trip!
- 3:30 pm
- Arrived at the Wind Point Lighthouse on Racine Point. (on Windridge Drive off of Lighthouse Dr.). Its a pretty large house and a white tower. The light is still in operation. This is a beautiful house and tower, on well kept grounds. The Village Hall is also located here. It’s very windy along the Lake Michigan shore today. We left at 3:50 pm. Arrived in Kenosha and kept following the road closest to the shore. We found the Kenosha Pierhead Light and the Kenosha Southport Light. (on Simmons Island which isn’t really an island.) The pierhead light is bright red and has a black top. The Southport Light has no tower top (lense area). It’s a grey/brown brick structure. We left Kenosha at 4:45 pm.
- 5:15 pm
- Got on I-94 just west of Kenosha.
- 6:50 pm
- Indiana line. Tolls $2.40. Had dinner at a Burger King in Griffith and bought pop and left at 7:30 p.m.
- 8:10 pm
- Michigan Line.
- 11:40 pm
Trip Totals: 27 Lighthouses, 1442 Miles, 5 days.
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Lighthouses: A Photographic Journey
Conceived and Developed by David S. Carter
Photographs by Donald W. Carter
Text by Diana K. Carter, Donald W. Carter & David S. Carter
Copyright © 1995, 1996 David S. Carter, Donald W. Carter, & Diana K. Carter. All rights reserved. Reproduction by any means, physical or electronic, in part or in full, without the expressed permission of the authors, is strictly prohibited.