You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

5 things you might not know about Lake Huron, the ‘forgotten’ Great Lake

Chicago Tribune logo Chicago Tribune 1/9/2020 By Tony Briscoe, Chicago Tribune
a small boat in a body of water: Dollar Island on Lake Huron in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. © Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS Dollar Island on Lake Huron in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

It’s the ‘forgotten’ Great Lake

Lake Huron is often overlooked compared with the other four Great Lakes. Superior has a reputation as the coldest, deepest and largest. Lake Erie, the warmest and shallowest Great Lake, is a world-renowned fishing ground. Ontario, bookended by the Niagara Falls and St. Lawrence Seaway, is the gateway to the ocean. And, at Lake Michigan, tourists flock to Chicago for its remarkable skyline along the shore.

a boat traveling across a large body of water: Dollar Island on Lake Huron in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. © Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS Dollar Island on Lake Huron in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Despite its remarkable size and pristine waters, Huron has been referred to as the “forgotten” or “orphaned” Great Lake because it lacks some of these distinguishable features.

It has 30,000 islands

The Great Lakes have 35,000 islands. Of these, 30,000 are in Lake Huron. The majority are sprinkled in Canada’s Georgian Bay. Perhaps the most famous island — not only in Huron, but in all of the Great Lakes — is Mackinac Island, the site of sacred grounds for Native Americans and a historically significant battleground from the War of 1812. Manitoulin Island is the largest freshwater island in the world and home to six First Nation tribes.

a close up of a pier next to a body of water: Mark Engle, the owner of Les Cheneaux Landing resort in Snows Channel at Les Cheneaux Islands in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. © Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS Mark Engle, the owner of Les Cheneaux Landing resort in Snows Channel at Les Cheneaux Islands in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

It’s the clearest Great Lake

When invasive zebra and quagga mussels arrived in Lake Huron, they filtered out microorganisms at a rapid clip. A 2017 study by the Michigan Tech Research Institute revealed Lake Huron has surpassed Lake Superior in clarity due, in part, to the introduction of the mussels.

It’s home to ‘Shipwreck Alley’

There are 14 federal marine sanctuaries in the United States. The only one in the Great Lakes is in Lake Huron. Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary is a 4,300-square-mile preserve near Alpena, Michigan, that holds the remains of 100 known shipwrecks. A combination of rocky shoals and treacherous weather earned the area the nickname “Shipwreck Alley.”

It’s connected to Lake Michigan

Because lakes Michigan and Huron are connected at the Straits of Mackinac, where water oscillates back and forth, scientists recognize them as one lake — the world’s largest by surface area.

———

©2020 the Chicago Tribune

Visit the Chicago Tribune at www.chicagotribune.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from Chicago Tribune

Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon