Visiting Historic Whitefish Point

Location: Whitefish Township, Michigan

Known as the Graveyard of Ships, Whitefish Point is home to the Great Lake Shipwreck Museum and Whitefish Point Light Station. Visitors can take in views of Lake Superior, search for Agates, and learn about the 240 ships that have been lost to Lake Superior.

Driftwood and Lake Superior

Whitefish Point is a hot spot for tourists, bird watchers, and historical enthusiasts. No matter your interests, it makes a great stop to get out, stretch your legs, and learn a bit more about the history of life on the Great Lakes.

Great Lake Shipwreck Museum

Great Lake Shipwreck Museum

The first time I visited the museum I was very young. Too young to comprehend or care about the historical significance of this area.

On visits as an adult, the museum has became a haven of information and artifacts of the 240 known ships that have sunk here.

One such famous ship is the Edmund Fitzgerald. This ship was lost with her entire crew of 29 men on November 10, 1975. The ship’s bell was recovered by the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society on July 4, 1995. The museum has the bell on display in honor of those lost.

The museum is well worth the trip to Whitefish Point.

Whitefish Point Light Station

Light station

This light station is the oldest operating light on Lake Superior and perhaps one of the most important. Its job is to guide ships through the area known as the Graveyard of Ships to the Soo Locks. These treacherous waters have claimed many lives and potentially could have claimed more if it weren’t for this light.

Light station from the beach

The soft sandy beach that the station was built on is also a popular area for those looking to collect Agates.

Whitefish Point Underwater Preserve

If you are interested in scuba diving, this is great opportunity to get up close with historical vessels. Established in 1987, the Whitefish Point Under Preserve focuses on protecting shipwrecks. Its intent is to stop artifact removal from shipwreck areas and preserve sunken ships for future generations to explore.

This area is accessible by skilled divers. Unfortunately, this isn’t something that we have done as we don’t have the skill set. However, I’m hoping some day to learn and be able to take this adventure.

For more information, visit Whitefish Point Underwater Preserve.

Bird Migration

Another bucket list item for me is attending the bird migration. Each spring and fall, Whitefish Point becomes a premier location for watching hundreds of birds migrate. Researchers and spectators from all over come to watch the diverse bird populations.

Visit the Whitefish Point Bird Observatory for more information.

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