Tag Archive: Cross of Lorraine


In “Discovered – The Cross of Lorraine” several types of law enforcement boats

play a role in the search and rescue of Tawny.

While in the Straits area last week I photographed a few of them.

Homeland Security

Take a look at the powerful engines mounted on the sterns of these vessels

and you can understand how they can reach such amazing speeds.

.Stern Homeland Security

 

Michigan Conservation Officer

This craft is manned by Michigan Conservation Officers.

Stern of Michigan Conservation Officers' Boat

Michigan Conservation Officers Emblem on Door

The above shots were taken at the St. Ignace Harbor. In the novel,”Chief” hitches a ride

from there on one of these boats. The law enforcement agencies in the Straits

work well together.

US Coast Guard Boat

Last, but certainly not least, the U.S. Coast Guard boat temporarily docked at

Mackinac Island Harbor. I had to quickly capture this shot on a cell phone

before they sped off again.

Wouldn’t it be great to see these three boats in a race across the Straits?

 

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Arnold Dock During Races

When entering the Mackinac Island’s harbor, visitors are immediately drawn to the historic

barns on the Arnold Dock. Iconic reminders of Mackinac’s rich past, the barns are very

much in use today. Invariably, at least one horse drawn wagon will be pulled up along side,

as merchandise is loaded or unloaded.

Horse drawn Wagon at Arnold Dock

In the novel Discovered – The Cross of Lorraine, Takoda’s workshop is located

in a historic barn out on the old Coal Dock.

Entance to Arnold Dock

The Grand Hotel, Ft. Mackinac and the Arnold Dock are probably the most prominent

and priceless structures on the island and we’re fortunate that they are well-preserved

and cared for by their owners and protected by the City of Mackinac.

Mackinac Harbor at night

 

Approach to Arnold Docks

Mackinac Island Shoreline Docks

While reading “Discovered – the Cross of Lorraine” some fans have had

difficulty picturing the coal dock where Takoda has his workshop.  The above photo

focuses on the Arnold Dock below Fort Mackinac. The coal dock is to the left, just out of sight.

View of coal dock in winter

This winter shot was taken from the Arnold Dock – looking toward the Coal Dock.

Of course it is all fiction, but this was an ideal spot for Takoda’s boat restoration

business since it is isolated, near the hardware store and wonderful boats

have actually been restored there.

Coal Dock

In 2005, extensive restoration of the Coal Dock began. Built before 1910, possibly as early

as 1860, the Coal Dock was aptly named, since coal used by residents was unloaded there

as well as hay, firewood and barreled fish. It was owned by the Arnold Line system for more

than 100 years, but before that belonged to Captain James Bennett and was known as

Bennett’s Wharf.

It is one of the most attractive sites on the waterfront and deserves preservation so that all visitors

throughout the coming years can enjoy seeing such a beautiful remnant of Mackinac’s past.

Handcrafted

The stern of one of the gorgeous wooden boats handcrafted at the Coal Dock barn.

Photos of the Arnold Dock will be featured in the next posting.

In Discovered – The Cross of Lorraine, the main characters are often travelling

back and forth to Mackinac Island on the Star Line ferries.

A chapter in Book Two, Witnessed – Measures of Love (to be published in late summer)

explains a little about this ferry line’s fascinating boats.

Star Line Ferry's Dramatic Rooster Tail

Here’s a preview of the text:

 “The ferry was pretty empty since the high tourist season begins Memorial Day weekend. Tawny and Takoda had the top deck to themselves. They waved hello to the captain and sat near the bow, close to the side rails, and looked on as the practiced crew flung the lines off the dock pilings.

The captain gunned the engines and quickly swung the boat around to face their destination, Mackinac Island. After they gained speed, he turned on the hydro pump that sucks up lake water, then shoots it out at the stern in a large plume of water.

Star Line is known for those towering “rooster tails.” Children and adults are all amused by the playful effect of the towering sprays.”

Star Line Approaches Dock

If you’re lucky enough to have “Scut” crewing (as seen on bow)

you’ll have great entertainment. This energetic wonder adds excitement to

the trip from St. Ignace to Mackinac and always gets folks laughing on the way back.

Horses Pulling Wagon in Winter at Mackinac Island

What is Mackinac Island Like in Winter?

That was one of the questions asked last week when a winter scene

from “Discovered – The Cross of Lorraine” was mentioned.

The answer? Very different.

Mackinac ISland's Main Street in Winter

Yes, motorized vehicles, snowmobiles that is, are allowed.

But bikes are used too, as long as possible.

With the awnings, flags, signage and colorful storefronts gone,

the streets look quite bare.

Snowy streets lead to lake at Mackinac Island

But the peaceful blanket of snow makes the island even more beautiful.

Especially when contrasted with the brilliant blue skies and stormy lake waters.

If you haven’t seen the video, “The Ice Bridge – Mackinac Island’s Hidden Season,” you should.

Available at the Island Book Store on Mackinac. It is stunning.