Glen Lake

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Glen Lake
Glen Lake (Leelanau County, Michigan).jpg
Coordinates44°52′N 85°57′W / 44.867°N 85.950°W / 44.867; -85.950Coordinates: 44°52′N 85°57′W / 44.867°N 85.950°W / 44.867; -85.950
Primary outflowsCrystal River
Basin countriesUnited States
Surface area4,871 acres (19.71 km2) Big
1,415 acres (5.73 km2) Little
Max. depth130 ft (40 m) Big
13 ft (4 m) Little
Surface elevation594 feet (181 m)[1]

Glen Lake is a lake located in Leelanau County in the U.S. state of Michigan, near Lake Michigan. Several villages and hamlets lie along or near its shore, including Burdickville, Glen Arbor, and Glen Haven. The lake actually consists of two large bodies of water connected by a narrow channel crossed by the State Route 22 bridge, with the larger body to the east being referred to as "Big Glen Lake" and the smaller body to the west as "Little Glen Lake". The two bodies, collectively referred to as Glen Lake, are at the same level and hydrologically similar. The total surface area of the two bodies are 4,871 acres (20 km2) and 1,415 acres (6 km2), with maximum depths of 130 feet (40 m) and 13 ft (4 m) respectively. Big Glen Lake is nearly perfectly round, while Little Glen is more elongated. The lakes empty into Lake Michigan via the shallow Crystal River which winds through Glen Arbor.

Glen Lake from the shore

The lake is located in a spectacular setting of wooded rolling sand hills just east of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, centered at 44°52′N 85°57′W / 44.867°N 85.950°W / 44.867; -85.950 (Glen Lake). It is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful lakes in the Great Lakes region. Its waters, filtered by the underlying and surrounding sands, are remarkably clear and pure, and glow with an iridescent indigo blue. Its beauty, purity, and lack of large waves make it a popular lake for vacationers, with opportunities for boating, swimming, and fishing. Sportfish present include yellow perch, smallmouth bass, northern pike, brown trout, and lake trout.

Big Glen Lake From West Shore
Big Glen Lake's Clear Water

The many trails, roads, and elevations in the area make Glen Lake a popular destination for running training. At the end of August, many colleges and high schools send students from athletic programs to the Glen Lake area for training, including the University of Michigan and the University of Virginia.

While many inland lakes in northwestern Michigan maintain local legends about being ranked as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world by National Geographic Magazine, the honor falls to Glen Lake.[2]

See also

External links

  • "Michigan DNR map of Glen Lake" (PDF). (242 KiB)


  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Glen Lake
  2. ^ Maynard Owen Williams, "By Car and Steamer Around Our Inland Sea," page 476, National Geographic, April 1934, National Geographic Magazine