Grays Reef Light

1891

LAKE MICHIGAN LIGHTS

USCG PHOTO

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This station was first lit by a lens lantern from Lightship No. 57 --- one of the earliest Federal lightships placed on the Great Lakes.
The lighthouse that was added in 1936 is identical to the structure of the one at Minneapolis Shoal. Both lights have an "art deco" look that was prevalent in construction during the 1930's.

LOCATION: In 26 feet of water, at elbow in Grays Reef East Channel (24 mi. W of Mackinac Bridge), NE end of Lake Michigan

CURRENT TOWER LIT: 1936

CURRENT USE: Active aid to navigation

AUTOMATED: 1976

FOUNDATION MATERIALS: Submerged stone / Concrete crib

LIGHTHOUSE MATERIALS: Reinforced concrete / steel

TOWER SHAPE: Octagonal on square dwelling --- 41ft. tall

COLOR(S)/MARKINGS/PATTERN: Originally was cream with a black lantern --- Now is white with black lantern

ORIGINAL LENS: Three and one-half Order, Fresnel

NEAT CHARACTERISTICS: This light has a rare feature in its concrete base --- a steel door near the water line. This door can be opened from the deck of a visiting ship. (The door is visible in the USCG picture.) This light is active & unmanned, but is used once each summer by Coast Guard personnel who monitor the vessels participating in the Chicago to Mackinac Yacht Race.