Feb 26-10

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2010: February: Feb 26-10
Big Mac    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Philip Odum
Grand Hotel    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Philip Odum

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:08 am:

Charlie started this week of the Pasty Cam with several old photos from when the Mackinac Bridge was first opened to traffic, both vehicle and deer crossings. So when I spotted today's photos in Philip Odum's album, I thought it would be neat to carry that theme into the present day, ice and all. If I'm not mistaken, this view of the bridge is taken from the Mackinaw City side of the span, so that would make that Lake Huron filled with all the broken shards of ice poking up all over.

You get a better look at the broken up tangle of ice that looks like it leads all the way out to Mackinac Island and the Grand Hotel which Philip zoomed in on from the mainland. In case you didn't know, the Grand Hotel has the longest porch in the world, at 660 feet long and in the summer months, it holds 260 geranium boxes across that length. But this time of year, things are pretty quiet on the Grand porch, until April when the hotel begins opening for the coming seasons.

Back to the broken up shards of ice... I'm wondering if there was an "ice bridge" from the mainland over to the island this year or not, with ice conditions looking like this. Anyone know?

By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:48 am:

Nice photos! I will be glad when I'm crossing this bridge during the summer with the windows down and it is 80 degrees, enjoying a nice warm breeze.

By Donna (Donna) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:50 am:

Amazing stuff...no matter what the season...we do live in one glorious part of this planet!

Don't forget to vote for the CC Humane Society!

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:52 am:

Well, aren't these pictures great? I prefer them in the warmth of the summer, but a picture of Big Mac is always a welcome sight.


By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:57 am:

The Big Mac...what a grand bridge! I think it would be such a thrill to do the annual walk across this bridge..is it a weekend in September? Labor Day weekend maybe?

By S.Urho (Sturho) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:07 am:

And....speaking of Ice Bridge: My g-grandfather's brother (my "grand uncle"), Pleasant Dow and family, traveled from Tampico, IL to the UP in the early 1900's and waited for the straights to freeze over. At that point, with cow in tow, they walked across the straights to the LP where they settled for a while in Free Soil, MI, and ultimately in Flushing. Looking at the broken ice and knowing the currents of the straights, I'm not sure I would be so brave as to walk across.

By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:37 am:

great pictures.

By Theresa R. Brunk (Trb0013) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:43 am:

My Father was stationed in 1938 at Sault station for the first time. He was told by many of the other officers that the best looking woman were on the Canadian side. So, he would take the ferry over to Canada and take the last late night ferry back to the U.S. Then he met the woman who was to become my Mother. On more than one occasion he missed the ferry and had to cross the straights of St. Mary on the ice to return to his ship so he wouldn't miss morning roll call and be declared AWOL. He told me that the cracking and creaking of the flagged off walking area was so scary he declared 'If I miss the ferry one more time this better be true love cause I am going to marry that woman and bring her over to the American side.'

And Congrat's Marianne! Nice catch. :0)

By Deb L. (Lakegirl) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:44 am:

Some days I suffer from insufficient memory, is it longer than the Golden Gate Bridge? I was over it once when I was kid to visit a family member in St. Ignace and I thought that was just amazing at that time. I know the straits history a little bit and how dangerous it was to cross in the winter. Didn't the Cedarville meet its fate in the fog somewhere in the vicinity of the Mackinaw Bridge? Worth a read if you are a boatnerd is "Shipwrecks of the Straits of Mackinac" by Dr. Charles E. Feltner and Jeri Baron Feltner.

By Joy Brewer (Joy) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:57 am:

One of my favorite bridges, the second one is, of course, the Portage Bridge. My youngest son lived on a Mackinaw Island all year long; I remember the day after Christmas seeing the Grand from the Arnold’s dock in St. Ignace, and how beautiful it was even in the cold of winter. The water was rough, but not like Lake Superior. Believe me, as a mother knowing that the only way for him to get home was in a ferry, I was very thankful that it was Lake Huron instead of Superior.

By Rowdy (Roudymi) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 09:11 am:

Nice discussion about Wolves yesterday. Isn't it interesting how we're able to sort out who we are and who "they" are?

By philip odum (Phishinfill) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 09:12 am:

my late great grandfather g.cronk had tall tale's of waiting for the ferry for the opener of firearm deer season before the big mac opened. lines of cars and hunters waiting too cross,folks selling things pulling wagons up and down the lines of cars.amazingly enough i have a mich.map without the bridge on it and a little town of nonesuch.tnx mary

By william wright mattingly (Wrightmattingly) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 09:34 am:

The bridge looks short,the way the picture was taken.

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 09:52 am:

Wow Alex you have windows on you "Wing"!? We didn't have any on our "81 Wing! And S.Urho I live just up the road from Tampico and wonder what that trip to the UP must have been like for a family to travel there in those days!

By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 10:38 am:

Kay...via the Wing or auto, I'd take either one right now. This is the time of year when I start thinking about nice warm cruises alot. I don't know if the day will come when Wings will have windows, but they are considering an automatic transmission.

By Helen Marie Chamberlain (Helen) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 10:57 am:

Janie, the Mackinac Bridgewalk is on Labor Day.
I've done it, if you can give it a try. An ethereal experience. Super pics!

By Eddyfitz (Eddyfitz) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 11:28 am:

Here is a great site on Wikipedia.

By Uncle Chuck at Little Betsy (Unclechuck) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 11:43 am:

It's friday afternoon, I should be North Bound and crossin that beautiful bridge! Oh well, these fine pics will have to do!

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 11:59 am:

Alex...got me thinking of some extreme rides. The coldest trip was thru Marquette and east, one June. My legs were so cold they felt like frozen logs and this was late June! On a trip to Denver in hot weather when my left hand had sunburned and swelled (riding west)'cuz I hadn't worn gloves. Then the trip thru h--l when we took a cruise one beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon in February.(duh) But a weather front came thru! We did 40 miles to home in freezing rain,wind, sleet,snow!!! Oh how I miss those times :O>)!!!

By Eddyfitz (Eddyfitz) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 12:50 pm:

We are having a touch of "global snowing" here in Sault Ste Monroe..Has snowed off and on now since Sunday eve and I have had to use the blower twice already today. I too remember going across the Mackinaw Straits on the ferry and then later on the new Big Mac bridge. It was a long trip from down here in trollland via bay city, st helen, grayling, cheboygan and then to wait in Mackinaw City for a few hours.

By Dale Beitz (Dbeitz) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 12:53 pm:

Deb L:

The answer to the question "which is the biggest bridge" depends on how you measure. In terms of overall length, the Big Mac is currently the third largest suspension bridge in the world with an anchorage-to-anchorage distance of 26,372 feet whereas the Golden Gate is 9,266 making the Big Mac considerably bigger. The way most organizations measure suspension bridges is the length of the main span, which is the distance between the towers. The Big Mac's main span is 3800 feet, while the GG's is 4200, so in that sense the GG is bigger. In terms of main span the Big Mac would be 12th largest in the world.

Most of this info comes from two sites

By Deb L. (Lakegirl) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 12:57 pm:

Thanks for the bridge facts. Have a great day everyone!!!

By Shirley Waggoner (Shirlohio) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 01:00 pm:

Beautiful photos! Oh my, I've just got to get on here much earlier...yesterday Alex 'stole' my 'idea' about the wolves and the Olympics, and today Kay, you 'stole' my idea. Was gonna ask Alex if his Goldwing had windows. ;D

By Kathyrn Laughlin (Kathyl) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 01:06 pm:

It's my understanding that the ice bridge is from St. Ignace to the island, so you wouldn't see it from the Grand Hotel shot. I think that they try to keep shipping open in the winter, and both under the bridge and the part of the lake in front of the hotel is the shipping lane, or at any rate close enough to get broken ice shards from the icebreaker's efforts.

I've done the Labor Day bridgewalk several times; it's more pleasant if you get a fairly early start, as they close off one lane to walkers after a certain time. I made the mistake of getting a later start one year; it felt more like a panicked horde fleeing ground zero than a nice stroll in a spectacular setting.

By Sally/Hocking (Twinb) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 02:54 pm:

Fun to see the Big Mac. Love calling people from "below" the bridge
a "troll"...love it and I get so many openings when discussing
where people are from and they say MI. Still think we should make
it the State of Superior up in the UP. I'm a proud, displaced Yooper
and miss it so much. Happy Winter everybody.


By Thomas Baird (Thomas) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 03:06 pm:

I can't help but be proud of "Mighty Mac." I did the Bridge Walk 4 the 1st time last year, and I hope to do it again this year.

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 07:28 pm:

Sally, my mom said she remembered that there was talk when she was young about seperation way back then. And she graduated from LLHS in '29. Wouldn't that be nice to have a new state of Superior!?

By James Alain (Charlevoix) on Friday, February 26, 2010 - 08:38 pm:

Measuring from anchorage-to-anchorage, the Mackinac Bridge is the longest in the western hemisphere. The two longer ones are in Denmark and Japan, I think.

By BJmilford (Bjmilford) on Saturday, February 27, 2010 - 09:09 am:

The first time I saw the Golden Gate Bridge I was surprised how "short" it was. A beautiful bridge, but short in relation to Big Mac.

By Charlotte, Mishawaka, IN (Charlotte61) on Sunday, February 28, 2010 - 07:08 pm:

Mary, I don't see an answer about an ice bridge this year. To date there hasn't been an ice bridge.

By Thomas Baird (Thomas) on Saturday, February 26, 2011 - 08:27 am:

Found this bit of pre-Mighty Mac history. Anybody remember, or have seen, these 1948 coins?
(click page captioned page 2)

By FRNash/PHX, AZ (Frnash) on Saturday, February 26, 2011 - 11:44 pm:

Thomas Baird (Thomas):
"Found this bit of pre-Mighty Mac history. Anybody remember, or have seen, these 1948 coins?
(click page captioned page 2)"

I didn't find any coins on page 2(!?)
The good news: they're on page 3!
Hmmm, I would have been 7 years old at the "Redeem before Aug. 15, 1948" date on the coins. I have never seen those coins before this!

P.S.: I see there's a chance of some confusion in the page numbering in the St. Ignace News:
The URL of the page in question is indeed:
http://www.stignacenews.com/news/2008-03-20/PDF/Page-2.pdf (note where it says "Page-2),
yet when the page is loaded it clearly identifies itself as "Page 3" in the upper right corner.

By Thomas Baird (Thomas) on Sunday, February 27, 2011 - 09:34 am:

Yeah, I don't know why they captioned the pages that way, numbering the front page 0, page 2 as 1, and page 3 as 2, and so on. Guess we'll have 2 e-mail them and ask them why.

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