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Holland Harbor (South Pierhead) Light

Location: the entrance to Macatawa Bay and Lake Macatawa near Holland, MI
Body of Water: Lake Michigan

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons

About Holland Harbor (South Pierhead) Light


The location of the light is the entrance to Macatawa Bay and Lake Macatawa. The nearest city is Holland, MI. The station was first established in 1872. The current lighthouse was first lit in 1936.

The lighthouse is a square tower on a dwelling.

The tower has alternating white and red lights at a focal plane height of 52 ft above mean high water. The light has a nominal range of 19 nautical miles. The tower height is 32 ft. The light has a period of 10 seconds.

Open to the Public?: By Appointment    Active?: Yes

Identification number: 7-19295 (U.S.)

In 1860, citizens managed to cut a new channel-present location from Lake Macatawa to Lake Michigan. It was deep enough for barges to float from Lake Michigan into Lake Macatawa. The first lighthouse was erected with $4,000 of federal funds in 1872.

The light alternates between a white light and a red light. The range of the lights are 19 nm for the white light and 17 nm for the red.

In 1956, a Coast Guard crew gave the fog signal building and lighthouse a fresh coat of bright red paint in order to conform to its "Red Right Return" standard, which called for all aids to navigation located on the right side of a harbor entrance to be red. Local residents began referring to the structure as "Big Red". This nickname continues today.

An 'alternating' light is a light showing different colors as it rotates. So in the 10 second period, the light alternates between white and red every 5 seconds.

Holland Harbor (South Pierhead) Light was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on July 20, 1978, reference number 78001509.

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons

Today's Conditions on Site

Astronomical Info.

Astronomical Dawn: 6:32 am
Sunrise: 8:12 am
Sunset: 5:39 pm
Astronomical Dusk: 7:19 pm

Local Marine Forecast.

There are no active watches, warnings or advisories 

Additional Conditions.

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons

Photo by: Jim Tracy
Source: USBeacons
Directions to Holland State Park (with access to the North Pier)
to view Holland Harbor (South Pierhead) Light