At the tip of the peninsula is the only major gap in the escarpment, Porte des Mortes, the fabled “Door of Death”—so named by petrified early French explorers. The ferocious local climate has devoured hundreds of ships here. Accounts vary wildly (travelers will believe anything—and pass it along at the next inn) regarding which tragedy gave rise to the name Door of Death, but all are remarkably harrowing. Most accounts point to a band of 300–500 Potawatomi—some say Winnebago—who were dashed against rocks. Before the advent of modern navigation and large, diesel-driven screws, most ships could not overcome the shifting currents or conflicting wind shears (and shoals).