Higher Lake Michigan water levels affect beaches, boaters

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By: Associated Press

CHICAGO (AP) — Lake Michigan water levels are up, making beaches smaller but helping boaters.

Steve Hungness is chief of operations for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Chicago District. He says lake water levels are roughly a foot above the 90-year average.

The Waukegan News-Sun reports water levels for Lake Michigan and Lake Huron were 2 feet below average in 2013. The lakes are measured together because the Straits of Mackinac connect them.

Hungness says there’s a “smaller beach visible” with lake levels higher.

Waukegan Harbor general manager Gregg Pupecki says water is high enough that a ladder isn’t necessary to get down to a boat at the permanent docks. Freighters are able to transport more materials with the water higher.