Mount Baldy beach to reopen 4 years after boy trapped

FILE - In this Aug. 14, 2014 file photo, a researcher uses large equipment to study Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore's Mount Baldy in Michigan City, Ind. Mysterious holes that forced the closure of a massive dune at an Indiana national park after a 6-year-old boy fell into one and nearly died were caused by sand-covered trees that left cavities behind as they decayed over the years, researchers have found. (Robert Franklin/South Bend Tribune via AP)

MICHIGAN CITY, Ind. (AP) – The National Park Service says the beach at Mount Baldy in Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore will reopen at noon Friday more than four years after the massive dune swallowed a young boy.

National Lakeshore spokesman Bruce Rowe says that even with the beach opening, the dune at Mount Baldy will remain closed for public safety and dune protection. He says the public can reach the beach fronting Lake Michigan by a half-mile-long directly west of the dune.

An estimated 11 feet of sand swallowed a 6-year-old boy from Sterling, Illinois, for more than three hours before he was rescued July 12, 2013. The Mount Baldy area has been closed since then. Officials say holes began opening up on the dune’s surface from decaying trees.

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