Voted America's most beautiful place, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore was authorized in 1970.
Legend has it that a forest fire on the western shore of Lake Michigan drove a mother bear and her two cubs to cross the lake to a nearby bluff for safety. When the mother bear arrived, her cubs were nowhere to be found. She waited on a high bluff hoping to see her cubs return. Her faith and determination caused the Great Spirit to create the North and South Manitou Islands.