by John & Ann Mahan


Now Available --
"Lake Superior: Story and Spirit"
companion DVD
(a condensed version of this book, with images, music, and sounds)

For more details about this program,
click here.



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Only three percent of all water on Earth is freshwater, and two-thirds of that is locked up in glaciers. Ten percent of the planet's remaining surface freshwater supply is cradled in a vast inland sea in the heart of the North American continent--Lake Superior, the world's largest freshwater lake (by surface area).

"That's not a lake, that's an ocean" is a common response by visitors first viewing the lake. To those familiar with Superior, mention of its name brings to mind visions of towering cliffs, headlands and bays, islands floating on the horizon, storms and high seas. Long a focus of scientific exploration and discovery, in recent years, the lake has also become an international focus for how to stop poisoning our world and ourselves with the products of our own commerce. In 1991 Canada and the United States designated Lake Superior "a demonstration area where no point source discharge of any persistent toxic substance will be permitted".

Lake Superior: Story and Spirit covers all this and much, much more: natural and human history; science and spirituality; danger, hope, and beauty. The photographs and quality presentation (on recycled chlorine-free paper with soy inks) make this a splendid "coffee table book"--but read it. What sets this book apart from other "picture books" of the region is its depth and breadth of information, supported by careful research.

The Mahans' personal knowledge of the lake, as canoeists, kayakers, wilderness campers, and hikers, is reflected in the reverent narrative and 140 color photographs. Their well-researched text has drawn enthusiastic praise from a wide range of experts and book reviewers.

In this look at Lake Superior and its surrounding watershed, the reader journeys with the Mahans through a broad range of experiences and subjects: sea kayaking in a gale, the mystique of islands, Native American legends and wisdom, shipwreck sagas and tales, the magic of water. They discuss the effects, economics, and ethics of toxic pollution and other environmental degradations--and how these relate to our own ultimate physical and spiritual well-being. Readers will discover the importance of diversity and symbiotic cooperation, what love and water have in common, and what two-billion-year-old rock has to say and what it indicates about humanity's current behavior.

The most comprehensive book on the Lake Superior ecosystem to date, Lake Superior: Story and Spirit reflects not only the beauty but also the interdependent and cooperative creativity of the natural world. The Mahans have detailed the life and spirit of an immense, interconnected, complex and vital ecosystem. By exploring universal themes and understandings that apply to the entire planet, they extend the scope and relevance of this book far beyond this freshwater sea.

See what reviewers and experts are saying about
Lake Superior:
Story and Spirit
Read excerpts from the book
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As authors and publishers of LAKE SUPERIOR: STORY AND SPIRIT, John and Ann Mahan have received Lake Superior Magazine's Achievement Award.
Lake Superior: Story and Spirit
by John and Ann Mahan

Foreword by Jack Vallentyne

288 pages, hardcover, 11 1/2” x 9 3/4”

140 color photographs

Map, Time line, Bibliography, Index

Printed in the U.S. on high quality chlorine-free recycled paper with soy inks

ISBN: 0-9659189-0-4

All images and text Copyright © John & Ann Mahan, unless otherwise noted.
All rights reserved
Note: It is illegal to take photos off our web site--
for any use, without our written permission.