Chronicling Lake Michigan Shoreline Erosion

By on May 5, 2020 in Lake Michigan |

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With 22,300 square miles of water Lake Michigan is a natural fresh water wonder. The water levels have been rising over the past few years with May 2020 levels at record heights. Water levels have reached 51 inches above chart datum (average set point) of 577.50 above sea level. As of May 1st water level is 581.79 which is above May 2019, above average lake levels and 2 inches above the record May level set in 1986. That’s significant when you consider each inch of water on Lake Michigan is estimated to be 400 billion gallons of water! With record water levels comes erosion along the lake shore. Each erosion episode leaves intricate patterns in the sand as walls of sand erode and cave in. I have been chronicling the episodes with the following pictures the latest of what I see through the lens of my camera. Each area feels in my imagination like an ancient archaeological find coated in brown sugar. (Click on photos to enlarge)

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