Ice Caves No Longer Safe
The ice formations in Leelanau Township, north of the park, are no longer safe to visit. High winds have fractured the ice, moving it to the west. Huge cracks have formed in the cave arches, making them very unsafe and open water is now visible.
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, is a wonderful assortment of habitat types scattered along the shores of Lake Michigan. Wildlife representative of Michigan in times past can be found during a drive, a hike, a camping trip, or a canoe trip around a small inland lake. Mammals such as white-tailed deer, red fox, porcupine, gray and fox squirrels, bats, and raccoons can be seen almost on a daily basis. Birds abound in the forests, open meadows, beaches, and waterways. North and South Manitou Islands are interesting for the wildlife present or absent. The islands have a wealth of birdlife, but there are no skunks, porcupines or red squirrels. There is only one species of mouse, the woodland deer mouse. Snowshoe hares occur on South Manitou Island but not on North Manitou. An assortment of snakes and turtles can be found throughout the Lakeshore and many campers go to sleep to the sound of frogs singing their evening chorus. Freshwater clams and fish abound in the waters. The sight of a swimming otter or beaver, a spawning salmon, or a hunting bald eagle can make the day for anyone walking along a lake or stream shore.
Download the Sleeping Bear Dunes Plants and Animals Checklist.
Did You Know?
The sand and gravel bluffs on the Lake Michigan shore in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore are 450 feet above the lake level providing outstanding views and sunsets. On a clear day, you can see South Manitou Island. More...