10 Things You Didn’t Know About Lake Michigan

Lake_Michigan_Landsat_Satellite_Photo You can see it from space, and yes, you could mistake it for an ocean, but the most popular Great Lake is also one of the most interesting. Here are 10 things you probably didn’t know about Lake Michigan:

1. It is the only Great Lake located completely in the USA.

That’s right. The other four Great Lakes are shared with Canada, while Lake Michigan sits entirely within the borders of the United States.

2. Twelve million people live along the shores of Lake Michigan.

If you thought Lake Michigan was a normal body of water, you’re clearly mistaken. The Lake Michigan coast a much desired place to live. Twelve million people live along Lake Michigan. To put that into perspective, that’s almost 4 percent of the United States population.

3. The width of Lake Michigan is 118 miles and the length is 307 miles.

Though this is impossible, if you drove across the lake’s width going 70 miles per hour, it would take you 1 hour and 41 minutes to cross the lake. Because boats are slower, it would take nearly twice as long.

4. Technically, Lake Michigan and Lake Huron together are one lake.

The two bodies of water make up one lake, technically speaking. They are considered separate lakes culturally, however they are connected by the Straights of Mackinac.

5. The term “Michigan” comes from the Ojibwa Indian word mishigami, meaning “great water.”

Because the name Michigan comes from the Indian word mishigami, then Lake Michigan, literally speaking, means “Lake Great Water.”

6. Lake Michigan is the result of the last Ice Age.

You have the last Ice Age to thank for all those fishing trips on Lake Michigan you take. Glaciers during the last Ice Age formed Lake Michigan and the surrounding Great Lakes when they retreated across the region.

7. It’s the third largest lake of all The Great Lakes.

Lake Michigan is the third largest of all the surrounding lakes, but it’s the largest lake that sits entirely with one country.

8. Lake Michigan has its own “Bermuda Triangle.”

Rumor has it that Lake Michigan has its own eerie triangle with a similar reputation as the Bermuda Triangle. The Lake Michigan Triangle has been known for many strange accounts. The triangle stretches from Ludington to Benton Harbor and has said to be responsible for many disappearances and mysterious occurrences in history.

9. Lake Michigan waves can reach as high as 20 feet.

The Great Lakes has some amazing storms roll across the water, and these storms can produce record waves reaching as high as 20 feet.

10. Lake Michigan is home to the largest freshwater sand dunes.

If you’ve ever had the chance to visit the resort beach towns in Michigan, you’ll find that the number one attraction is climbing the sand dunes or going on a thrilling dune ride!

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