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by Chaotic crew
July 5, 2010
September 14, 2005
The beach is easy to get to, and it’s just minutes from St. Joseph. Take 63 North (Main Street) from St. Joseph. Turn onto Rocky Gap Road (there will be a sign on the highway directing you where to turn).
If you want beach atmosphere without the crowds, check out Rocky Gap Beach.
From journal Four Days in Southwest Michigan
December 10, 2004
First, let me preface with this: I have been to beaches all over Cape Cod, Maine, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Venice, Santa Monica, Carmel (California), and Lake Erie. Now, let me tell you this: ROCKY GAP IS MY FAVORITE BEACH. How often have you thought about how nice it would be to go to one of those infamous secluded beaches on Kauai? Well, when that happens to me, I look in my wallet and realize that Rocky Gap is a fabulous substitute for the money!
To compare with all other beaches I've been to, at Rocky Gap there is no parking or entrance fees, a short 1 minute walk from the car to the water's edge, no painful debris on the lake bottom (in 2004), no kelp or fish in the water, no fishy smell, no salt-water taste or residue on your skin, no dead animals, no debris or trash in the sand, very small waves, and maybe, on a hot weekend, there 10 other people, spread out at least 15 feet apart. Even on "crowded" days, there will be much fewer people per square foot here than at any other local beach. On a return visit in July 2005, the first few feet of the water was jammed with smooth, colorful rocks, so Rocky Gap does live up to its name some years.
People come here for privacy and quietness, so please don't bring your kids or barking dogs. This is not a kid-friendly beach anyway since there are no lifeguards, no bathrooms, no food, no drinking fountains, no playgrounds, no volleyball courts, and not a very wide area of sand for throwing balls.
Best times to be alone:
During lunch and dinner
Anytime it looked like unperfect beach weather earlier that day
During overcast weather
*Combine any of these above factors for even better chances.
On three occasions throughout the summer, the water's surface was absolutely smooth with no waves. Consider yourself very lucky if you go on a day like this and it's warm enough to get in the water! It is SUCH a surreal feeling to float in giant body of water that's perfectly smooth as far as the eye can see. Those days REALLY felt like I was swimming in a postcard from paradise. On the flip side, there were also a few days when the waves were churning up a few feet and creating some picture-perfect whitecaps. This is often due to a storm elsewhere on Lake Michigan, so these days are still very suitable for tanning on the beach!
From journal Tropical Paradise on Western Michigan's Coast?!