On the till plains in Branch, Kalamazoo, Antrim, Charlevoix, Menominee, and Iron counties, and on the plains of Cheboygan, Presque Isle, and Alpena counties, are curious long cigar-shaped hills known as drumlins. Drumlins occur in areas where the ice advanced over previously formed till plains. They are elongate in the direction of ice movement and most of them have a front or "stoss" slope at the head end which is somewhat steeper than the lee slope. The drumlins near Ellsworth, Antrim County, have cores of Ellsworth shale, those in Les Chaneaux Islands have cores of limestone. The roller coaster character of the old roads in Menominee County was caused by the roads crossing drumlins at right angles; the new highways cut through them, but the long narrow hills with graceful slopes are quite visible from the highways. As a rule drumlins are arranged more or less parallel, and are separated from each other by poorly drained troughs or swales. No completely satisfactory explanation has as yet been worked out to account fully for the origin of drumlins, but geologists have accepted the viewpoint that most drumlins were sculptured by active ice during an advance or readvance.
The Antrim-Charlevoix drumlin field
One of the largest and most widespread drumlin fields in the midwest
lies in the NW Lower peninsula, centered on Antrim and Charlevoix Counties.
The map below, from an unpublished paper by Lundstrom et al., shows the
drumlins as short, red, subparallel lines.
The Leelanau peninsula also contains a significant drumlin field, as does the Mission Peninsula.
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