Thursday, March 18, 2010

Split Rock Lighthouse

Years before my dad took me and my brother diving up North, he took friends and diving students, and once or twice he took my mother.  She was determined not to be a SCUBA widow and she had an "if you can't beat 'em join 'em" attitude about the whole thing.

He took her to the Madeira wreck that I described back here. That is Gold Rock and the rocky beach in the upper right corner of the photo above. The wreck was only accessible then from the roadside shoulder of Highway 61 but access has improved since those days.  Back then there was no proper place to change clothes at the dive site. My uninhibited dad had no problem stripping down nude in semi-public places, but my mother was a different story.
"Nobody will see you" he reassured her after they had carried all their gear down to the beach.
She nervously glanced up at the lighthouse. She saw that the lighthouse had an unobstructed view of her (you can see her point of view here--the lighthouse is in the upper right background).  Throwing caution to the wind, she undressed and changed into her bathing suit and wet suit.
Later that evening after the dive, they met some friends for dinner in Two Harbors. After dinner, they drove back up Highway 61 and stopped at the lighthouse, which had only recently opened to the public. To my mother's shock and horror, the lighthouse had one of those telescopic, coin-operated viewfinders, and it clearly looked down on the beach where she had undressed earlier that afternoon.

Added: this photo:


  1. Ah, yes, the ol' "Nobody will see you" assurance. They fall for it every time.

    Another great post, and great linkage, too. I like the picture of you and your buddies on the lake shore, especially, and glad to see the access to the wreck site's improved. What an amazing place.

  2. Beautiful post! I know that area. Highway 61 ia a favorite route along the west coast of Lake Superior, and with a west turn onto Highway 1, a rugged trip up to Ely, MN; a place everyone should visit (but not all at once, and not while I'm there).

    I think I'll pass through Two Harbors sometime this summer on the way to Grand Marais. I'll stop at the Lighthouse and remember your post, eyes averted.

  3. Thanks you two! My pleasure. And Michael, I'd love to take my family up there sometime. I haven't been there since that photo I linked to. Lots has changed I suppose. I won't be going diving there though anytime soon.

  4. Haz: It might be worth your while to visit the wreck site. From the sounds of it, they've made it into part of the state park. Plenty of parking and easier access (see the link above).