In the Great Lakes State, Kitch-Iti-Kipi, Michigan, is a hidden treasure.

Kitch-iti-kipi is the largest natural freshwater spring in Michigan and is located in Palms Book State Park, now a public park for all to visit.

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It wasn’t always like this. Once used as a lumber yard, Kitch-iti-Kipi was discovered by Manistique businessman John Bellaire in the 1920s. Bellaire peered through the decaying logs to the natural beauty below, and convinced the owner of the property, Frank Palms of the Palms Book Land Company, to sell the state of Michigan. The land became Palms Book State Park, and in 2003 an automatic observation raft was built to allow a glimpse of this stocked pond.

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The Big Spring is mesmerizing, characterized by its brilliant emerald color that gives it an almost otherworldly appearance.

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Located deep in the UP wilderness, approximately 10,000 gallons of water per minute gush from tiny cracks in the limestone that line the bottom of the spring. Connected to nearby Indian Lake by an underground aquifer, the spring’s water is a constant 45 degrees Fahrenheit year-round.

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Whether you call it Kitch iti Kipi, the Great Spring or even the “Mirror of Heaven”, as it was given by the native Ojibwe, you will agree that it is a true wonder of nature.

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You can’t swim in Kitch-iti-kipi. However, Indian Lake State Park is located nearby. It is located on the shores of Indian Lake, the fourth largest inland lake in the state, and features a beautiful swimming beach.

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