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Old 01-21-2021, 09:08 PM   #1
City: Port Clinton
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 24
Lake Michigan average anchoring depths

We plan on exploring Lake Michigan this summer and wondering what are the average anchoring depths we will encounter? Thanks for any advice anyone can give us.


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Old 01-21-2021, 10:27 PM   #2
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City: Grand Rapids, MI
Vessel Name: Arcturus
Vessel Model: 1973 Concorde 41 DC
Join Date: Sep 2020
Posts: 170
Hardly ever anchor on the Lake itself but the south half is mostly gently sloping sand so you can go as shallow as you want. Of course you only anchor on the Lake if it's calm, and that's not often. North half is rocky so not too good for anchoring. The harbors on the east shore are mostly rivers and attached lakes and anchorages are usually 12-25 feet. Most of the lakes are quite large with lots of places to choose from. A lot of towns have dinghy docks or landings too. West shore has a lot of smaller man-made harbors with no room to anchor, but they do have city and commercial marinas. I'm on the east shore and I don't go across often because I prefer anchoring over marinas.

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Old 01-21-2021, 10:30 PM   #3
City: Great Lakes
Vessel Model: OA 440
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 695
10-20' everywhere we've been....except Round Lake in Charlevoix which is something like 40-50' in the middle. Pull up the free NOAA charts and have a look....
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Old 05-02-2021, 10:16 AM   #4
City: Detroit
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 622
It really depends on where you will be going, but in general the lake has a sandy bottom that gradually slopes off into deeper water. Anchoring over night along the shore will likely be a one eye open night, but if you have a lock solid weather window it has been done many times. The lee of the islands are generally a place to find refuge and some of them have coves which will protect you well for overnight stays. The Manitous, Beaver Island, Sturgeon Bay (Waugeshaunce Peninsula), Harbor Springs, Mackinaw Island-Round Island-Bois A Blanc, Les Cheneaux's, etc all can provide overnight anchorage. The winds are predominately from the southwest in the summer. East or Northeast is usually a three day affair and you will want to seek safe harbor. The Northern Wisconsin shoreline and the Upper Peninsula can be very rocky and difficult to anchor in. Northern Michigan is an absolute paradise. I hope you have a wonderful time.
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Old 05-02-2021, 07:51 PM   #5
City: Port Clinton
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 24
Thanks, we plan on looping Lake Michigan this summer and we have never been up the west coast. We may even try to catch just a little of Lake Superior.
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