If you ever find yourself in Middle-of-Nowhere, West Texas about 150 miles from El Paso you'll encounter the remote, desolate exit on Interstate 10 for Michigan Flat. Take the exit and you'll find nothing. No town, no services, just some dusty backroads.

Despite that, searching on social media, you'll see a surprisingly decent amount of photos and videos for Michigan Flat.

So how did Michigan Flat, a dot on the map that appears, while no official stat exists, to have a popular approaching zero, come to have so many hits on Instagram? Likely it's the app's geo-locating feature that places images taken and uploaded by travelers on the interstate near Michigan Flat.

The Desolate Beauty of Michigan Flat, Texas

Here are some examples from Instagram and elsewhere that are tagged as coming from Michigan Flat.

Perhaps the best video is this happenstance capture of a full rainbow across the Texas flats

Click through for more views of Michigan Flat:

What Is Michigan Flat, Texas?

There are a few scientific and historic sites that document Michigan Flat. From a site maintained by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Michigan Flat is described as

located just east of Van Horn, Texas, in far West Texas. Michigan Flat is a finger-like projection of the southern part of a larger area known as the Salt Flat. This area stretches from the Texas – New Mexico border south through Hudspeth and Culberson Counties. Michigan Flat is bordered on the northeast by the Apache Mountains and on the west by the Beach Mountains and the Baylor Mountains.

The site documents the water quality of the aquifers beneath the flat.

The Texas State Historical Association tells a bit more about Michigan Draw, the small, likely often dry stream that gives the flat its name.

Michigan Draw, through which flows an intermittent stream, begins a mile northeast of Chispa Mountain and four miles east of Lobo in southwestern Culberson County (at 30°49' N, 104°41' W) and runs northeast for twenty-three miles before running dry a mile south of Interstate Highway 10 and U.S. Highway 80 and three miles southwest of Plateau (at 31°02' N, 104°37' W). The streambed traverses flat to rolling terrain surfaced by variable soils that support scrub brush and sparse grasses.

What we can't find is why the geographic feature bears the name of the Great Lakes state. Our best guess? It was named by westward-bound explorers who hailed from Michigan and named the area for home.

So should you find yourself way out in West Texas on Interstate 10, pull off the highway at exit 153. You won't find much there, but you can claim something few of your fellow Michiganders can: you've been to Michigan Flat.

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