Sunset Hopes in Copper Harbor

Written by Dennis Caskey

Sunset Hopes in Copper Harbor” – Just thinking about the place where I took this image is such a pleasant memory.  It was the definition of peaceful.  A reddish rocky beach…  Driftwood…  A dead calm Lake Superior…  And the love of my life.  It’s a great way to spend an August evening.

Dennis Caskey Photography - Sunset Hopes in Copper Harbor

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– Chasing our Sunset Hopes in Copper Harbor –

Last summer through a series of unplanned events my wife and I found ourselves in the Keweenaw peninsula while doing a whirlwind trip through Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (the U.P.).  While there, we drove up to Copper Harbor, a small town on the northernmost point of the Keweenaw.   After spending some time there we hit the road in search of a sunset on the way back to our hotel.

We left Copper Harbor heading west on M26. We were hoping to make it around the northern end of the Keweenaw Peninsula in time to catch a view of it.  I normally like to have my camera set up about an hour before the sun actually sets, but we were already too late for that.  The light was fading already as we were heading out of town.

As we traveled down the road, we saw many places that would have made great photographs, however, they were on private property, so… we kept moving.  We were starting to get discouraged as the light continued to fade. Eventually, though, we found this little gem of a beach.⁠  A beach without any “no trespassing” signs.  So we stopped.  I don’t remember the exact location, however, I think it was on, or near, a place called “Dan’s Point”.  It’s just a few miles outside of Copper Harbor.

We got there in plenty of time to set up for the sunset.  The fading light, it turns out, was more from some clouds blocking the sun than from the sun setting.  This beach was unlike any I have ever seen before.  It was a rocky beach.  Or would you call it a stony beach?  In my opinion, they were too big to be called stones.   They were smooth, almost polished from the waves over time.  In the daylight, they had a reddish color to them, however, in the light of the setting sun they took on a bit of a reddish violet hue, if that is such a thing.

It’s not the kind of beach we were used to seeing in the western part of the lower peninsula. No sand here. Just rocks with a reddish hue. I’m assuming the red is from iron in the rocks, but I’m not really sure.⁠

Nature had placed a couple of driftwood logs on the rocks as well.  Lake Superior was as calm as I had ever seen it.  It wasn’t quite as smooth as glass, but the waves were so small you could only barely hear them as they lapped the shore gently.

A reddish rocky beach…
A dead calm Lake Superior…
It’s a great way to spend an August evening.

I set the camera up to catch the sun setting right between a couple of large rocks protruding from Lake Superior.  There were a lot of clouds on the horizon that I could tell were going to block the sun soon so I started snapping images while I could still see the sun.  The color was beautiful.  The rays of the sun in the distance were a mix of red and orange as they shined down onto Lake Superior.

Our sunset hopes were realized.  Sunset found.  🙂

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