Time running out for La Salle shipwreck

FAIRPORT, Mich. (AP) -- Explorers and scientists are still searching for a 17th century shipwreck in northern Lake Michigan, but time is running short.

They've spent nearly a week examining the lakebed near the spot where expedition leader Steve Libert found a wooden beam nearly 11 feet long sticking out of the mud.

He believes it's from the Griffin, a ship commanded by the French explorer La Salle that disappeared in 1679. Libert thinks the rest of the ship is buried nearby.

Underwater archaeologists from France said this week the timber appears to be part of a ship and hundreds of years old. But crews found its base wasn't attached to anything.

The excavation permit expires Friday, so they're widening the search area.

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