In February, 2011 homeowners noticed that their bluff was starting to go and by May the bluff had dropped several feet. This bluff slump occurred along the coast of Lake Michigan in the northern part of Sheboygan County, about one mile south of the Manitowoc County Line.
While not always visible, the bluffs are continuously changing due to erosion. Years and even decades can pass without any major loss, and then in one single event a section of bluff-top can start falling into the lake. Living along these bluffs requires that we understand how erosion works so that we can avoid putting people and buildings in dangerous locations by establishing science-based approaches for determining safe building setbacks.
Photos start in 2007 when the owners took out a permit for structural work. The local building official believes they were probably standing near the edge of the bluff at that time. The 2011 photos show how quickly the bluff slump occurred between February and May. The 2012 photo shows the home in its new location across the highway – in this case the property owners also owned the adjacent land across the road to the west and were able to move the house before any damage occurred.
Click on the pictures below to view full size images: