A windy day with lake-effect rain prevented us from hiking too far, yet I didn't mind standing in the wind and rain to capture a few hundred photos of the waves crashing into the lighthouse in St. Joseph, Michigan. Waves appeared to reach 10 feet (perhaps more) as they pounded the pier and lighthouse. This particular area catches waves and pushes the water back out to the lake, creating much higher waves at times as they crash into each other next to the lighthouse.
I shot a bit of quick video to show how the waves on Lake Michigan are treacherous. The rather compact size of the lake (22,000 square miles) keeps the waves churning back and forth. The frequency of the waves seems much greater than that of the ocean. The waves seen here reach a height of around 12 feet.
In colder weather, this is what creates the unusual and beautiful ice formations on the lighthouses. The spray freezes each time a wave hits the pier, and many hours later, the lighthouse is covered in a thick layer of ice.
Posted by Tom Gill at Monday, October 20, 2014