Mackinac Island Winter Update – Vol. 14 – 3/7/2012

This past weekend Islanders got what they’ve been waiting for all winter – a big snow event!  Fourteen inches of big, fat, fluffy snowflakes fell over a two-day period, turning magical Mackinac into a white wonderland.  If I could have chosen one time to be on the Island this winter, this would have been the time!

The post tonight is all about the beauty of Mackinac in the cold of winter.  Through photographs from friends on the Island, I hope you will sense the quiet peacefulness of this special place at this time of year.  Every season on the Island has its own story to tell, and tonight the story is serenity.

Photos by Robert McGreevy

Leap Day (Feb. 29) dawned with rough water - giving a hint of what was to come.

On the first day of March, the first snow flurries arrived. The flag at the Post Cemetery, always flown at half-staff, could barely be seen through the wind-whipped snowflakes.

Photos by Harbor View Inn

On Friday night, the heart of the storm hit the Island.

Downtown looked pretty deserted. The snowmobiles parked along the street probably belong to folks who left the island for the night or weekend. When they return, they'll have to blow snow off their "ride" before they can go home! I can't even imagine what riding through this would be like . . . . but I'd like to find out!

Street lamps cast a blue tint on the east end of Main Street. That first white house is the art museum.

Photo by Nicole Doud

Nicole and Andrew's dog, Charlie, gets an early morning walk through wonderland on Saturday morning.

Photos by Doud’s Market

Doud's Market Sign on Saturday morning. Yes - of course they were open!

I wonder if snowmobiles have those electric seat-warmers like some cars have.

At last! Islanders could ride their machines without having to skip all over the road looking for snow patches! This is Main Street in front of the marina.

Fort Street. The Trinity Church steeple blends into the gray skies, as more snow falls.

The lady on the hill sits wrapped in her blanket of white.

I love all these photos, but this is one of my favorite. The Island library has just enough color to peek out from all that white. This would have been a great day to sit in front of the library fireplace, read a good book, and occasionally glance out the back door at the half-frozen Straits.

Market Street - a real, live snow globe.

The boardwalk - out past the library.

Photos by Heather May

A big, very old lilac tree . . .

. . . stands as a silent sentinel at the corner of this Cadotte home.

Another Cadotte home. I love that splash of blue against all that white.

The Lucky Bean Coffee House (Mackinac newest coffee spot). Come spring, there will be a cute little table and chairs outside that front door so you can sit and enjoy their yummy hot drinks and fresh-baked pastries.

The Cloghaun Bed & Breakfast . . .

. . . and the Metivier Inn Bed & Breakfast. Do you remember how the yards of these two inns look during the summer? Each is a riot of flowers in every color in the rainbow.

A quick glimpse down Hoban Street shows snowmobiles parked across from the Cawthone Village Inn.

French Lane looks empty except for a few tree branches that gave way under the heavy snow.

The Shepler Dock. You can see on the far right that someone started to walk out to the end, and then had a change of heart.

This photo of Fort Street shows a little more of Fort Mackinac. You can see, in the upper left corner, where the awning is missing. All Mackinac awnings are removed at the end of the season so winter storms can't ruin them.

I think in most places, it's the streets that are snowplowed. On Mackinac, it's the sidewalks. Love it!

Sigh.  Sigh.  Sigh.  What a wonderful world up there in the frozen north.  Of course, I’m not the one shoveling the snow!

Come on back next week, and I’ll see what news I can round up from our favorite Island.  See you then.  God bless.


37 thoughts on “Mackinac Island Winter Update – Vol. 14 – 3/7/2012

  1. Brenda,

    Like you said, you’re not the one shoveling all that snow. But on the Island they don’t have to shovel driveways and shovel out stuck cars either, so they can appreciate the beauty of the snow – and it is beautiful. There can be no doubt about that.

    I don’t think I can choose a favorite picture. They are all so beautiful. Thank you to those who took the pictures and thank you, Brenda, for taking the trouble to post them. I’ll just bet I can speak for every person who looks at this blog when I say that I really appreciate it.

  2. Love all the pictures! Definitely a winter wonderland for sure. I also would love to spend some time there during this peaceful time.

  3. What I would give to be there. So pretty. My favorite is the picture of the library. One of my favorite places on the island. Thanks for sharing with us to all who took the pictures.

  4. Don’t get me wrong, I love seeing pictures of Mackinac in spring and summer, it is just gorgeous, but at winter all I can say is “WOW”. The island in all it’s white splendor is magnificent. To me the buildings look better in the background of white.

    I will add my “Thanks” to all who have sent you the pictures to share with us.

  5. Strange Question? Have they always allowed “motorized” snowmobiles in winter over there? I thought there were no motorized vehicles allowed on the island? Just curious as to what the rule is…

    Beautiful pictures thank you so much for sharing 🙂

    • I don’t know when snowmobiles were first allowed, Stacy – but it was many years ago. With the winters they usually have on the Island, if snowmobiles weren’t allowed many residents would be virtually stranded in their homes. Not everyone owns a snowmobile, but those who do are always kind enough to pick up “walkers”. Bikes aren’t usable, and there is only one taxi in the wintertime. The “no motorized” rule goes back into effect as soon as the snow melts for the last time in the spring.

  6. awesome photos! Makes me actually miss Northern Michigan and all of Mother Nature’s blessings. Looking forward to moving back

  7. The photos speak for themselves “Fantabulous”! Thank you photographers. What gorgeous, peaceful looking photos. A real winter wonderland indeed. I hope all of the lovely trees and huge bushes have survived the weight of the beauty.

  8. Loved your pictures -only get up there in May after the thaw -what a sight to see everything in white thank you so much!!!

  9. So beautiful! Let me add my thanks to all the islanders who shared their photos with you to share with us. The webcams truly did not do this justice!

    I don’t know when snowmobiles were allowed, but up until 1970 there were none. There was a fire engine, and I think a station wagon used as an ambulance, but I don’t remember other vehicles (aside from an occasional earth moving something). I do remember the incredible quiet. The diesel engines on the boats weren’t there. The waves were quiet because it was all frozen. The majority of the birds were gone, and no tourists. It was incredibly peaceful, especially back in the woods. You could hear the trees groan as they swayed. When the wind blew (it is the Straits, after all!) it could make so many different sounds. It was amazing.

  10. Pingback: Bree’s Blog |

  11. Thanks for all the beautiful pictures. It does make you want to be there.
    Have a book recomendation for you. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford. A really nice story.
    Thanks for all you do.

  12. I don’t think I can pick one favorite picture…they are all breathtaking. The blue house was one we looked at renting last summer (but didn’t). We were also in northern Michigan over the weekend (Manistee) and got alot of snow there also…not as much as the island and just north, but enough.

  13. Thank you so much for sharing.. I have great memories of the island. I was married there 24 years ago before it was cool to do a destination wedding.. what fun that was.. and then brought both of my children back to the “Little Stone Church” to be christened. Love this place….

  14. That’s the most snow I’ve seen all winter. Down here in SE Michigan it’s been pretty lame this winter. All that snow up north looks like fun.

      • Brenda and/or Frog,

        I may be dense, but I can’t figure out what I said that would include anything to put in scrambled eggs. Could it be snow in the eggs? I think you would have a hard time finding that in the summer, although I suspect that sometime or other it has snowed every month of the year on the Island. I know that’s true of many places in Northern Michigan and the Upper Penninsula. Do you suppose either of you could enlighten me?

      • LOL, Lowell. Frog said that he agreed with you on not liking boiled peanuts. “Frog” is Charlie, our brother-in-law (married to Ted’s sister, Cathy). They come to see us every summer, and I threatened to put boiled peanuts in “Frog’s” scrambled eggs this summer. That was confusing, wasn’t it!

      • OK, that makes perfect sense now. Frog, you’re a man after my own heart.

        I did know who he is, but I couldn’t think of his name when I was writing my comment.

        By the way, Brenda, I do drink sweet iced tea (in summer, in winter it’s hot tea). And fried okra is one of our favorites. It was also good in the vegetable beef soup I made today. And pecan (puh-cahn’) (pee’-can? Never!) pie is my favorite. I’m diabetic, so I don’t get much of that.

  15. HI, I know this might seem really random, but I was looking at the Island Bookstore website and clicked the link to your blog…and I was just wondering if you knew of a good place to work there (Mackinac Island) this summer season. Such as the library?
    Please disregard this question if it is too much of a nuisance, but I’d really appreciate any advice or recommendation you could give. Thanks =)

  16. I love the library photo-it looks like an antique hand tinted shot. We had a baby blizzard here this morning at about 4:30am-I was driving to the gym and all of a sudden all I could see was white! It went from nothing to everything covered with snow in about 15 minutes. I’ve lived in Michigan a long time and I’ve never seen anything like it.

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