Monday, January 31, 2011

Ice Bridge 2011

Last Boat: January 19th

First Ice Crossing: January 23rd

First Trees Placed to Mark the Trail: January 24th


So what's an ice bridge?

This is - the Straits of Mackinac, frozen between Mackinac Island and St. Ignace, approximately a four mile trip. For Islander's it means freedom to come and go to the mainland at will, without worrying about ferry or plane schedules.

Christmas trees are cleverly repurposed to mark the trail:

It can seem like a highway out there sometimes, with all the comings and goings...and even billboards!

Here's another use for the ice: a landing strip, note the skis on the front!

So, why does the ice bridge go to St. Ignace and not Mackinac City?

Freighter traffic. This 1000 footer is making way slowly through heavy ice, with the Coast Guard ice cutter moving in advance. If you happen to be out on the ice when one goes through, it's an unsettling feeling - literally, you can both feel and hear the ice moving.

The ice came in fast and early this year, how long it will last is unknown. But we'll enjoy it while it's here, our temporary bridge, created by nature and thus subject to nature's whims.


  1. Fantastic! Really interesting. Ice makes such loud moans!

  2. How interesting! I've lived in Michigan since 1965 and I've learned more about northern Michigan from you blog!! thanks for posting!!

  3. Fascinating! I'd love to see/learn more! Thanks.

  4. glad to hear that you all have the ice bridge this season.