Crisp Point Lighthouse

Crisp Point Lighthouse, Newberry: Hours, Address, Crisp Point Lighthouse Reviews: 4.5/5

Crisp Point Lighthouse
4.5
Historic Sites • Lighthouses
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10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
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About
Crisp Point was one of four original Lake Superior Life Saving Stations. It was built in 1875 and became operational in 1876. Plans to build Crisp Point Lighthouse were originally proposed in 1896 and every year after, until it was finally approved in 1902, to be built with a budget of$18,000. Fifteen acres of land with a quarter mile of lake frontage was purchased in 1903 for $30. Due to continuous erosion, the lighthouse grounds now consist of less than three (3) acres. On May 5th, 1904 the light became operational. The tower housed a fixed 360 degree red fourth order Fresenel Lens. The lighthouse tower stands fifty-eight feet in height from its base to the ventilator ball of the lantern. The tower was placed on a ten foot deep and fourteen foot wide concrete foundation. The lighthouse station also contained a service building attached to the tower, a two family, two story brick keepers house, fog signal building, a boat house, oil house, and barn. Over time numerous cribs, groins, and sheet piling were constructed to prevent erosion, only to be destroyed by the massive forces of Lake Superior. In 1965, because of vandalism and maintenance problems, the United States Coast Guard decided to destroy all remaining buildings except the light tower and its attached service building. In 1996 the service building to the tower perished, the result of numerous Lake Superior storms. It was at this time, Crisp Point Lighthouse was listed as the most endangered lighthouse in the United States. Beginning in 1998 and other years since, large stone has been placed along the shoreline to help slow the threat of erosion. Erosion caused by wind and water will always be a major concern at the light. The service building to the tower was rebuilt over a two year period and opened in 2008. In 2009 the Crisp Point Visitors Center opened. The center is a replica of the fog signal building, containing historical displays, merchandise and restrooms. In the Fall of 2012, a new solar powered light was installed in the lantern room and was turned on in May 2013. This marked the first time the lighthouse had been lit in 20 years. The light is now operated seasonally from May to November as a Private Aid to Navigation (PATON). PLEASE NOTE THAT THE VISITOR CENTER IS ONLY OPEN FROM APPROXIMATELY MAY TO NOVEMBER AND THAT COUNTY ROAD 412 IS NOT SNOWPLOWED OR MAINTAINED IN THE WINTER. The Crisp Point Light Historical Society (CPLHS) was formed in 1992 and is a nonprofit 501.C.3 organization. CPLHS is an all volunteer group whose purpose is to restore and preserve Crisp Point Lighthouse for future generations. The solitude and tranquility felt at the light are irreplaceable and the sunsets are some of the best you'll see anywhere. We invite you to visit Crisp Point Lighthouse, it is definitely worth the trip.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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Tripadvisor gives a Travelers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travelers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
The area
Address
1944 County Road 412, Newberry, MI 49868
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
260 reviews
Excellent
204
Very good
38
Average
10
Poor
3
Terrible
5

Fritomann
Portage Lakes, OH166 contributions
Couples
The rain stopped finally, and I drove over from where we were staying in Paradise, Michigan.
Whitefish Lighthouse and Iroquois tower were reported closed for covid19 tell em shove it. Whitefish was happy to charge $14 to tour with OUT the tower climb.They didn't get My money.
Crisp Point was open, and that's where I went, and so glad I found it.
The 20 miles of dirt road took about an hour to traverse in my Jeep; when I arrived around 10.30 am I must have been their first customer of the day.

The visitor's center was manned by Chris and Danny. They are top notch lighthouse guardians, staying I learned, just for the week. You have to get on a waiting list if you want to be a lighthouse keeper here, and since there are no accommodations it's bring yr own tent. Or RV.
They offered a US Lighthouse Society Passport for sale, and I have been visiting lighthouses and climbed a bunch since 2010, and this was the first time I ever was aware of their existence. So I bought one, of course. Now I have to go back, in time, and document all my previous climbs and visits,, and fill in the pages.
Crisp Point lighthouse is open to climb for free, but you must leave a generous donation, in my opinion, to keep these open and maintained for future generations. Hope they even care.

The beach was spotlessly clean , not much driftwood, normally beautiful
Lake Superior stones and small rocks everywhere, near the water, and more IN the water. Kicked off my sneakers and dipped in for a few. NOBODY ELSE around. I took a few pics but there are so many pics from others I wont bother.
Solar panels for electricity are the only power here. The bathrooms have flushers but no sinks for handwashing. I found that a little strange.
There are no keeper's quarters here and that's a shame. But everything that's survived are well cared for, and the natural beauty of Lake Superior, what can I say. Like off in another time, no cellphone comm, no Google, drive to Newberry for a car wash.
I did that.
If you can take the rough road, by all means come up here in the UP. There's more, lots more.
See for yourself.

Fritomann review $$
Written August 20, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

HeidiH-L
Michigan139 contributions
Family
We first visited Crisp Point Lighthouse in 2020 on a friend’s recommendation. Although it was enjoyable, the pandemic had closed the tower, the day was rainy, and the drive over muddy rutted dirt roads was a joy sapper.
Dry weather and 2 years later, what a difference. The driving route had been fully graded and was even enjoyable, and the park itself was gorgeous. We loved chatting with the visiting caretaker family in the gift shop (full of unique, affordable items). Then climbed the tower (just do it) and ate our picnic lunch in the middle of a quiet spot that smelled like white pine trees.
This lighthouse / state park is the definition of hidden gem.
Three details:
*There are nice, clean restrooms available.
*The grounds are beautiful - AND there are no garbage cans. Anywhere. Take along a bag or two to carry your trash out with you.
*Sign the guestbook (there is one outdoors as well as others in the main buildings). Help the park demonstrate its value to Michigan tourism.
Written July 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Brian R
Oswego, IL518 contributions
Couples
The drive to the lighthouse is as exciting as the destination. An 18 mile jaunt on a sand road through the national forest with ups, downs, and turns. The road looks more like a ATV trail but cars do make it! Once there there is a beautiful lighthouse that you can go up in and explore the Lake Superior shoreline. A nice gift shop in the building has
volunteers with very helpful information. A must see when in area I'd say.
Written August 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Steven D
Spring Hill, TN1,725 contributions
Couples
First off you won’t find this fantastic lighthouse station by accident — very remote access — but well worth the extra travel time & rough route to access the property. Picnic tables are available — but here — you haul out your own trash and leftovers — sorta like camping. There is a small gift shop and info center staffed by knowledgeable volunteers [who live in campers on site during the season].

The lighthouse tower is accessible to those up to the challenge of a tight spiral staircase that finishes with a straight climb up ladder style steps and finally out through a small hatch doorway. At the base of the tower is an interior gallery of historic artifacts, elements and photos.

The “station” sits on a sandy shoreline up on a bluff surrounded by large rocks to minimize the erosion from beautiful Lake Superior. This excursion can be combined with a trip to the “ Falls” either before or after.
Written August 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Happycamper
1 contribution
The drive there is part of the experience; it’s a long drive rom anywhere and the last 7 miles is a narrow dirt road, so it’s advisable to call ahead to check road conditions. Once you’re there… wow! Miles and miles of unspoiled Lake Superior shoreline with few people. The view from the top of the lighthouse (of which there is no charge to climb, but donations are accepted) is spectacular! The beach is a rock hunters dream! The all - volunteer “staff” is friendly and informed and are a delight. There is a small Visitors Center, with museum quality exhibits and lots of merchandise to purchase - all proceeds go to restoration & upkeep of the lighthouse. There are flush toilets, but bring your own drinking water as there is none on site. No electricity or cell phone signal either - it’s a perfect chance to escape technology and civilization! (Also no trash service, so take your trash with you.) DO NOT use GPS to get there, as it may take you down the wrong way… onto an ATV trail. (GPS is sporadic in the U.P.) You should take at least 1/2 day to enjoy this beautiful place and you won’t be disappointed!
Written December 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

pasadena5150
sterling heights21 contributions
Forget the horror stories you have read about the roads and how you need a tank to get to the lighthouse because of the puddles. You slow down and just drive through it. County road 412 is a 2 track road with some ups and downs. Drive slow and enjoy the scenery. We encountered 3 different pick up trucks coming back towards us. So you both just move over a little to the right and you will have no trouble getting by each other. We encountered a few different puddles covering the whole road. We had no trouble getting through any of them. We had a 4 wheel drive vehicle but never needed the 4 wheel drive at any point. Now for the lighthouse itself. Magnificent! I'm sure you've seen the pictures but they don't do the place justice. You have to be there in the middle of it to really appreciate the beauty of the Lord's creation. We climbed the stairs to the top of the lighthouse and the view is fantastic down the shoreline and of the lake itself. After about 15 minutes my wife and son went back down to walk the shore and collect some of those cool rocks. I stayed up there just to take in in the view for almost an hour by myself. I can't describe how peaceful it was just looking at the gorgeous view. You can walk the beautiful grounds or just sit in on one of the benches and watch the waves hit the shore. On your way out stop at the gift shop and look around. I picked up a way cool coffee mug. If you are thinking of visiting this beautiful place stop thinking about it and just go!
Written June 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thank you for your review! You’re absolutely correct, just take it slow through the puddles and it should be no issue. I wince every time I hear them called “water holes”. They’re just really wide puddles!
Written September 9, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Colleen S
1 contribution
Yes, the road is rough and sandy. There are times it may be inaccessible because of standing water. Most of the time you can drive there without a problem. If it rained really hard recently, maybe don't go. Drive slow. Use a Luce County map so you don't get lost. You can buy them at local stores and gas stations. GPS will not give accurate directions, and you will not have cell service. Stay on the county roads. Don't take the ORV trails unless you have an ORV. A high clearance 4x4 would be the best choice, but most other vehicles can get there. The road narrows, and you might have to pull off at a wide spot to let other vehicles pass coming from the other direction. When you park, stay in the main parking lot. Do not go into the ORV parking area in the back unless you have an ORV or really good 4x4. The sand in the ORV area is very soft, and you will get stuck. This is one trip that is about the journey and destination. The drive is beautiful and a lot of fun, and the view of the lighthouse in this wild, remote place is absoluting amazing.
Written September 9, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Indy-ND
South Bend, IN3,380 contributions
As mentioned in other reviews, it is quite the drive to get up to this lighthouse, so if you are interested in visiting, start by asking yourself if your vehicle is up for the 20 mile (each way) drive on dirt/washboard gravel/sand/deep sand/one lane/hilly/narrow road. It gets progressively worse the further from the main road you get. Some of the way is not bad at all. Some of the way you ask yourself what they heck are you doing there. Oh, I forgot about the washout area and the big humps/holes that you better watch out for so you don't accidently go "Dukes of Hazzard" airborne. At some point, you will be driving the one lane area and a car/truck/motor home will be coming the other way and you both need to figure out who can get out of the way so you can get past each other. We also had to deal with a car that broke down in the road and we had to drive around, which meant going up into the brush.

It was a great drive though. Something you will talk about.

The payoff is an absolutely beautiful Lake Superior beach (rocky) that you will have almost to yourself, a great lighthouse you can climb up into, a nice gift shop with super nice volunteers working, some excellent rock hunting, and a very interesting history lesson. Check out the Google Maps Photo Spheres in Street View. It shows how amazing it is.

Highly Recommended, if you can make it there. Oh, and take bug spray.
Written November 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

jmpncsu
Raleigh, NC4,381 contributions
We visited Crisp Point Lighthouse while traveling across the Upper Peninsula. It's a really beautiful lighthouse on Lake Superior and the beach around it is just gorgeous. The lighthouse itself was closed due to covid, but we enjoyed just walking the grounds. Keep in mind that the road to the lighthouse is about 20 miles of gravel roads, with a few sections being rough. There are signs at intersections so it's pretty easy to follow. Plan for an hour drive each way from the paved road.
Written September 22, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Angelique L
Escanaba, MI432 contributions
Beautiful, remote area! 18 miles from the main road and I'm not going to lie, the road gets more narrow and more winding as you go. Caution MUST be used especially in the last 5 miles or so because it is difficult to see around corners and traffic is mixed between cars, trucks and off road vehicles. We were there the week before the 4th and were actually shocked at the number of people who were on the road. It is a beautiful, remote area of Lake Superior with well maintained lighthouse. There is an emergency phone on the premises, just in case, and a host on site to answer questions. There is also a giftshop on site.
Written July 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thank you for your review! We also recommend people turn their headlights on so it’s easier for people to see them coming around curves etc.
Written September 9, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Crisp Point Lighthouse

Crisp Point Lighthouse is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM