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Old 06-21-2015, 10:46 PM
 
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Why Lake Michigan is the most dangerous Great Lake | MLive.com
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Old 06-21-2015, 11:17 PM
 
Location: Midwest
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True that...there is usually a few stories each summer about people being stuck in rip currents at the Chicago beaches. People...if you're caught in one swim parallel to the shore until you're out of it.
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Old 06-22-2015, 12:25 AM
 
Location: Caverns measureless to man...
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I guess it depends on how you define "dangerous." If you're talking about swimmers, then yeah, I could accept that Lake Michigan is probably the deadliest of the 5 lakes. But if you're including casualties from shipwrecks, it's hard to imagine any of the lakes being more deadly than Superior. It has more ships lying on the bottom than any similarly sized body of water in the world, and thousands of lives have been lost to her storms - especially the nor'easters, the ferocious "gales of November" that have smashed ships such as the Edmund Fitzgerald.

That's one scary lake; with the average water temperature around 40 degrees, you only have minutes to live if your ship goes down. Very few sailors have survived being wrecked on Lake Superior.
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Old 06-22-2015, 08:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albert_The_Crocodile View Post
with the average water temperature around 40 degrees * * * on Lake Superior
...shore based swimming casualties are minimized, since no one goes in for very long at all.
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Old 06-22-2015, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Miami Beach, FL/Tokyo, Japan
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More people swim in Lake Michigan than any other great Lake (probably) so it's not a surprise it has more deaths. Lake Superior is more dangerous but who will swim there?
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Old 06-22-2015, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albert_The_Crocodile View Post
I guess it depends on how you define "dangerous." If you're talking about swimmers, then yeah, I could accept that Lake Michigan is probably the deadliest of the 5 lakes. But if you're including casualties from shipwrecks, it's hard to imagine any of the lakes being more deadly than Superior. It has more ships lying on the bottom than any similarly sized body of water in the world, and thousands of lives have been lost to her storms - especially the nor'easters, the ferocious "gales of November" that have smashed ships such as the Edmund Fitzgerald.

That's one scary lake; with the average water temperature around 40 degrees, you only have minutes to live if your ship goes down. Very few sailors have survived being wrecked on Lake Superior.
True, but there are tons of shipwrecks in certain areas of Lake Michigan, which has far more traffic overall (boats & swimmers). I grew up in Door County WI, or "Porte des Morts" ("Death's Door"), named after the treacherous straits on the north end of the peninsula: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Porte_des_Morts

"The strait is littered with shipwrecks. Some say it has more shipwrecks than any other section of fresh water in the world."

Generally, commercial ships stay away from Porte des Morts now. It's a great area to SCUBA and check out shipwrecks.
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Old 06-22-2015, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
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Originally Posted by SDPMiami View Post
More people swim in Lake Michigan than any other great Lake (probably) so it's not a surprise it has more deaths. Lake Superior is more dangerous but who will swim there?
Me. Swam there each of the last few years. Not yet this year, though, even Lake Michigan is pretty cold right now after the long, chilly spring.
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Old 06-23-2015, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Marquette, Mich
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SDPMiami View Post
More people swim in Lake Michigan than any other great Lake (probably) so it's not a surprise it has more deaths. Lake Superior is more dangerous but who will swim there?
Me, too! Actually, a lot of us. If the wind comes from the right direction, and the sun has been shining, you will find a lot of folks in Superior on a warm day. Problem is, we haven't had any really warm days yet this year...Unfortunately, we do have our share of rip-current fatalities. People underestimate the Great Lakes. I remember someone I knew in Iowa years ago who didn't believe that you could stand on the shore of one of the lakes and not see across to the other side. These waters are not to be trifled with!
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Old 06-23-2015, 11:52 AM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leebeemi View Post
I remember someone I knew in Iowa years ago who didn't believe that you could stand on the shore of one of the lakes and not see across to the other side. These waters are not to be trifled with!
Heck, the lakes are bigger than most states! Of course you cant see the other side. hahaha Some people shock me.
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Old 06-23-2015, 11:56 AM
 
Location: Milwaukee
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So many people who have never been to the Great Lakes are absolutely floored when they first look at Lake Michigan or Superior, at least. Always a pause and then a tinge of recognition/understanding - "oh, it's not just a big lake, it's a sea that you can't see across and it's just enormous." That's why I feel people should visit all the biggest/best natural attractions - go to the Rockies, see the oceans, check out some huge waterfalls, hang out on the biggest chain of lakes in the world, drive across a vast desert, etc. You really have no clue unless you physically experience these things.

A few summers ago (and the summer before that) it was really hot all summer, even up along Lake Superior. Swam like mad those years, though you're right in that it helps to know the local specs on when the water is at its best. We just asked people. Spent nearly an entire 95 degree day in Lake Superior, and it was beautiful. Usually I take a short swim to chill, but we eventually moved our chairs (with cupholders) into the shallows and sat drinking beers while half-submerged.
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