Point Betsie Lighthouse

Point Betsie Lighthouse is located near Frankfort Michigan and just south of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. According to PointBetsie.org, Point Betsie Lighthouse was built in 1858 and cost a whopping five thousand dollars. For more information on Point Betsie Lighthouse click on the link above.

Ken and Lori Snyder of Unified Photography had contacted me to see if I wanted to go out and shoot. They were in town for the Worldwide Photo Walk and wanted to get out and make some pictures. Obviously I said yes but where should we go? Well it just so happened a massive cold front was moving in and the winds were picking up. When the winds pick up lighthouses, piers, break-walls are always good subjects to photograph. The crashing waves make compelling and interesting images. So my goal was to get an image of Point Betsie Lighthouse with a big crashing wave in the foreground. That turned out to be harder than it sounds.

The waves were big but caused lots of spray that kept getting the lens front element wet. I had to repeatedly wipe off my lens in order to get a photograph of good quality. It was a difficult task. I never did get a crashing wave photograph to my liking.

Near the end of the night I wanted to try to get a long exposure image to see if I could capture the moving clouds. That turned out to be one of my best images of the night.

The weeks post picture was taken at 20mm on my 16-35mm lens. I had my camera mounted on a tripod, and to achieve the cloud blur my exposure was 30 seconds.

The cold, wet, and wind made this photograph a tough one to make. 4 hours of waiting for the "right" image was my payoff and I am glad I toughed it out.

Point Betsie Lighthouse is a great photographic subject in any condition, but watch the weather for those cold fronts that bring the clouds, winds and waves, and Point Betsie Lighthouse turns into a magical shooting location.