Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Split Rock Lighthouse

I had a two and a half day trip up to northern Minnesota last week, and despite the subzero temperatures I really enjoyed the views up on the North Shore. I've been up this way before but never during winter. I made my way up Highway 61 early on a Tuesday morning for the express purposes of taking pictures for use in a "Visual Assessment" in relation to the proposed tower. As part of this I ended up getting a good number of pictures of the Split Rock Lighthouse, a National Register historic site located on a cliff above Lake Superior. The lighthouse was constructed in 1910, well before there was even a road in the area. It's a beautiful old building, and fortunately the actual tower location coordinates I'd been given were a couple of miles off, and the project will have no real impacts on the historic site (unfortunate for my time spent driving around). It wasn't a complete wash though - I did get quite a few nice shots of the lighthouse and surrounding frozen landscape. The photo at the top of the page is taken with the sun behind the lighthouse.
Here is the lighthouse from behind, coming up from the Visitor's Center.
The Split Rock Lighthouse, in profile.
Here is the building that housed the foghorns. They were run by two gasoline engines.
Here are the keepers' houses. It would have been lonely, back before 61 was built.
The view of the lakeshore from the lighthouse. It was very cold that morning, about four below zero. The wind coming off Lake Superior wasn't too strong, but the occasional gusts cut to the bone.
The view of Lake Superior. Since it was so cold but the lake is still open, great banks of fog were coming off of the water.
After taking pictures at the Lighthouse I drove down to a campground in the surrounding State Park. A trail from the parking lot led to the lake and Pebble Beach. This is a few of Little Two Harbors toward a small island in the lake.
Pebble Beach, as it was called, consisted of smooth gray stones, all covered in a rime of ice. It was exceedingly slick, and given the cold temperatures and the fact that I still had a site walk to finish it was likely foolish of me to walk down to the water. One slip and I would have been in for an inadvertent Polar Bear Swim.
AS I was wrapping up the Assessment photos, I grabbed this shot of the salt-encrusted Civic at the scenic overlook, with the Split Rock Lighthouse in the background.


Blogger Ms. Fabrics said...

My favorite picture is a toss up between the civic and the lighthouse (obviously) and the first picture (which is really beautiful). I wish I had your knack for photography. I truly suck at it!

3:33 PM  
Blogger wallrock said...

Thanks - when you've taken over 10,000 pics for work, you start to get the hang of things.

5:20 PM  
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