14 Mile Point Lighthouse


14 Mile Point Lighthouse

Built in the late 1800's, the 14 Mile Point Lighthouse offered guidance to passing ships from the shores of 14 Mile Point until the 1950's when it was decommissioned and sold privately. The lighthouse caught fire in 1984 and what remains of it are the lighthouse's brick walls and metal cupola. Other surviving buildings are the brick signal house and a white wooden structure. Though much of the grounds have been overgrown with vegetation over the years, there's still a lot of room to pitch a few tents for camping. Of all the places I've been in the UP, this has hands down been the hardest to get to. But also easily one of the most worthwhile.

14 Mile Point Lighthouse signal house (maybe?)
Creepy abandoned house at 14 Mile Point Lighthouse. Where the lighthouse keeper stayed, possibly?

To get here from Houghton, head west downtown, through the yooper loop and west on M-26. Continue until you reach Toivola and turn left onto Misery Bay Road. Continue on this road for 10.5 miles until the road ends and turn left onto Camp 18 Road. Drive 0.6 miles and keep right onto an unnamed dirt road. In a mile, keep left onto Evergreen Road. Continue for 1.4 miles and you'll be back on Camp 18 Road. Go 2 miles and turn right. You'll run into a yellow gate but it should be unlocked. Head north for 1.8 miles continuing straight. The road will abruptly transition to a sketchy looking severely overgrown two track at 0.9 miles but keep going. The farthest I was able to get was at the bend at 1.8 miles but if you have a high-clearance 4 wheel drive vehicle you can probly get to the clearing marked on the map. Park at one of these places and take the westward 4 wheeler trail 0.6 miles to the beach. Follow the beach for a half mile and you'll have to cross East Sleeping River (see picture below). Go another half mile and you'll need to cross West Sleeping River. Continue on the beach another mile and take a sandy two track away from the beach to your left and immediately turn right. There's a 4 wheeler trail that goes west that is easier to walk than the beach. Continue on this until it starts to turn south. Go north through the woods back to the beach and try to continue on the beach. There were a huge amount of trees on the beach due to a storm that made the beach here impassable so we had to bushwhack it for a while. You should pick up another 4 wheeler trail in about 0.5 miles and that will take you up to the lighthouse (1 more mile). Yeah it's a long complicated trip I know.

East Sleeping River crossing

I went here during record high lake levels so in the future you should be able to just walk the beach all the way to the lighthouse, making the hike significantly shorter. The way I described above should get you there if the beach is impassible in some spots, like we found it to be. All in all, the hike in took about 2.5 hours. So expect to spend 5 hours hiking and two hours of driving total, maybe more if you like to baby your car. Don't attempt this with a sedan or minivan as some of the roads are wet and made of clay. If you don't have at least good tires and clearance then you'll get horribly stuck. There's no cell service here so make sure you have a gps app (like the one I talk about in the Links tab) for navigation. Also I'm pretty sure you can get up into the top of the lighthouse by some sketchy ladders people have made in the past (see pictures below). Alot of the wood is rotting though so be careful.


Even if you don't plan on camping, this is a great full-day trip. Try to leave for here early. Keep in mind this hike requires a couple waist-deep river crossings too. Wear good shoes and bring flashlights and extra water, just in case.

Some links to check out:

https://blog.jacobemerick.com/hiking/abandoned-lighthouse-of-fourteen-mile-point/

http://lighthousefriends.com/light.asp?ID=732

It's also for sale if you're so inclined!

https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/Fourteen-Mile-Pt_Ontonagon_MI_49953_M31222-71303

#Hike #Campsite #Beach #AbandonedPlaces

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