Lake Michigan’s shipwrecks visible through startlingly clear waters

Share This Story!

There’s a lot to love about Lake Michigan. We’ve shown you breathtaking galleries of a paddleboarder navigating the ice floe, and some bizarre ice balls that washed up on its shores.
But some recent aerial photographs show just how clear the under-appreciated great lake can be. Peering down, you can see straight to the bottom, and you can even make out details of long-forgotten shipwrecks below.
The pictures are provided by the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station in Traverse City, and were taken near Sleeping Bear Point. The area is renowned for its shipwreck diving due to the high volume of traffic from a lumber industry shipping route.
Many of the wrecks are unidentified, except for the James McBride, which was one of the first vessels to deliver cargo from the Atlantic Ocean to Lake Michigan. The wreck is believed to have been down there since 1848!
It is estimated that approximately 6,000 boats have sunk in the Great Lakes, and Lake Michigan is home to about 1,500.
As the weather warms, algal blooms will most likely obscure the wrecks, but for now the clear waters are a boon to shipwreck enthusiasts.