Environment Picture

View from Cleveland: ‘It was no mirage, it was Michigan’

Occasionally, it takes an outsider to remind us how unique and spectacular our natural resources are in the Mitten State. Such was the case with Cleveland Plain Dealer travel writer Susan Glaser’s July 16 column sharing her awe and reverence during a family trip to Michigan’s West Coast sand dunes.

“I have never been to the Arabian desert, yet I imagine this is what it looks like: sand, only sand as far as the eye can see. But I’m not in the Middle East; I’m in a state park … I can’t help but think: This is Michigan? The answer is, astonishingly, yes.”

Her words resonate with anyone who has marveled at the majestic and irreplaceable dunes—and with those at the Michigan Environmental Council who work behind the scenes to protect coastal dunes from irresponsible development and mining.

Glaser’s fresh eyes remind us why the 10,000-year-old dunes are so important to Michigan’s heritage and identity.

“The largest dunes here, at more than 400 feet, are more than four times the tallest on North Carolina’s Outer Banks,” Glaser continued. “We descended on an especially large dune and found ourselves completely surrounded by sand, with not a single other soul in sight. It was here the landscape felt most foreign and utterly unfamiliar. It looked like a different planet, or at least a different continent.

“But it was no mirage. It was Michigan.”

Glaser’s column can be found here: http://bit.ly/nXo4pc
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