Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is home to some of the most beautiful sights in the state. Rugged sandstone cliffs along the shoreline of Lake Superior are shaped by groundwater filtering through cracks in the rock. During winter, this water freezes and creates breathtaking displays called ice caves.
There are many areas around Lake Superior where ice caves can be found, but some of the most impressive is on Grand Island. To get to these, visitors first have to go to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. Then, they have to take a cold and windy mile-long hike across the frozen Lake Superior to get to Grand Island. Since lake ice is unpredictable, visitors must carefully check conditions before attempting the crossing. Sometimes, getting to Grand Island is completely impossible.
When the ice is thick enough to reach Grand Island, the frigid hike to get there is worth it. The ice formations there can be up to 80 feet tall in some places. To get inside a cave, visitors have to have a certain amount of luck. Because of the nature of the freeze-thaw cycle, formations may change from week to week. You have to be there at just the right time to be able to get inside one of the caves, or there may be no entry points into the ice. If you are, you will be treated to stunning blue and white ice walls that you will not find anywhere else.