WP Weekly Photo Challenge Answer: One


So where is this famous, one of a kind tree, that I used to represent the theme of “one?” I kind of already gave the answer away on the original post, but some folks wanted to know more about the picture, so here it is. I took the photo at the top of Empire Bluff, Empire Michigan, located in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore area. To get to Empire Bluff, one must hike a fairly easy, though mostly uphill trail, about 1  1/4 miles I believe. My family and I have done this trail multiple times, the last with our very fit daughter-in-law carrying her two-year-old most of the way!

When you reach the top, there’s a great view of Lake Michigan, South Bar Lake, Empire Beach  and the Sleeping Bear Dunes coastline. The summit is a popular place for watching sunrises and sunsets, and a popular jumping off point for hang-gliders.

The “one” tree in the photo is no longer there. This tree has been dead for many years, but stood for years beyond it’s death, despite the harsh winds and soil erosion, hastened by the visitors who insist on leaving the assigned trail to walk in the delicate dune landscape. It finally fell a couple of years after I took the photo. I’ve been told that this tree has a famous photographic history, including a stint in National Geographic, although I’ve never seen said photo myself.

The photo is taken from the bluff, looking north. Lake Michigan is on the left, the Sleeping Bear Dunes coastline is in the background.

Another view of this very famous tree (© Huffygirl)

© Huffygirl

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14 thoughts on “WP Weekly Photo Challenge Answer: One

  1. I never saw this as we never went to that location. However, when I was a child my family used to camp in Ludington and we would go to the lake and climb and play on the sand dunes. Was really cool.
    Thanks for your photo and explanation Donna. It brings back memories.

      • You’ll have to put that photo on your blog Ann! I’m lucky to live where I can walk along one of the best lakes in the world. (Of course first I have to drive an hour to get there)

  2. Yes we did a lot of fishing there as well, including wading into a shallow area with a net to catch minnows for bait. One time a HUGE WATER MOCCASIN WENT PAST US. Oh my that was really scary.

      • I know, it can be scary when we realized some bad things could show up in places like that.
        As for the photo of me and my dad I don’t remember if I ever got it scanned in digitally; and the actual picture is packed away.

      • Well I hope you find it some day Ann. If you ever get back to Michigan, you can take more photos of our amazing dunes and lakes.

  3. Dear Huffygirl, Since the picture of the tree is on the bluff with Lake Michigan to the west it is a great place to watch the sunset. However the dune is to the east and would block the sunrise. Therefore it would not be a good place to view the sunrise. That’s why you are the writer and I am the navigator. We make a good pair.
    Love, Hubby.

    • Thanks Hubby. Apparently you are the first reader astute enough to catch this, or else the other readers were too polite to say. It’s true – I am hopelessly directionally challenged. If I ever try to climb the dune to watch the sunrise, I hope you’ll stop me. Then again, it’s unlikely I’ll ever be up that early, so probably not a problem. I hope none of the readers will try to climb up there to watch the sunrise either, or, as you point out, they’ll be dissapointed.

  4. The family still in Michigan are way south of there and I don’t get up that way when there.
    One of these days after I sell house in Georgia and move to Greenville, SC and am able to unpack everything I am sure I will find that picture.

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