Skip to main content
Michigan State University

Michigan Shoreline: Home

We calculated the number of miles of shoreline in Michigan, both Great Lakes shoreline and inland lakes shoreline.

Units are in miles*

County Name Inland Lakes Great Lakes Total Shoreline
Alcona 163.70 27.27 190.97
Alger 548.81 122.32 671.13
Allegan 359.94 24.62 384.56
Alpena 212.35 100.69 313.04
Antrim 199.29 26.66 225.95
Arenac 64.75 81.20 145.95
Baraga 511.49 79.60 591.09
Barry 519.29   519.29
Bay 106.70 90.58 197.28
Benzie 158.60 24.69 183.29
Berrien 354.21 42.63 396.84
Branch 219.25   219.25
Calhoun 271.90   271.90
Cass 331.15   331.15
Charlevoix 205.20 139.06 344.26
Cheboygan 265.21 40.19 305.40
Chippewa 556.62 267.37 823.99
Clare 314.95   314.95
Clinton 119.04   119.04
Crawford 73.32   73.32
Delta 279.82 236.19 516.01
Dickinson 257.20   257.20
Eaton 135.42   135.42
Emmet 138.34 79.70 218.05
Genesee 342.30   342.30
Gladwin 263.26   263.26
Gogebic 832.56 30.88 863.44
Grand Traverse 281.54 60.63 342.17
Gratiot 92.13   92.13
Hillsdale 269.28   269.28
Houghton 528.08 56.56 584.64
Huron 98.13 236.82 334.95
Ingham 134.95   134.95
Ionia 124.38   124.38
Iosco 300.36 37.92 338.28
Iron 804.47   804.47
Isabella 149.57   149.57
Jackson 565.52   565.52
Kalamazoo 383.76   383.76
Kalkaska 178.57   178.57
Kent 452.23   452.23
Keweenaw 302.71 443.23 745.94
Lake 196.97   196.97
Lapeer 301.08   301.08
Leelanau 144.27 156.26 300.53
Lenawee 236.27   236.27
Livingston 608.12   608.12
Luce 500.36 31.70 532.06
Mackinac 609.59 343.28 952.86
Macomb 172.17 37.80 209.97
Manistee 163.46 25.47 188.93
Marquette 1,140.71 85.17 1,225.87
Mason 257.61 28.89 286.50
Mecosta 371.42   371.42
Menominee 183.87 42.95 226.83
Midland 140.55   140.55
Missaukee 169.09   169.09
Monroe 116.33 64.02 180.35
Montcalm 340.31   340.31
Montmorency 226.94   226.94
Muskegon 257.40 27.38 284.78
Newaygo 341.31   341.31
Oakland 1,329.80   1,329.80
Oceana 208.55 26.54 235.09
Ogemaw 249.43   249.43
Ontonagon 557.78 54.53 612.31
Osceola 279.84   279.84
Oscoda 173.92   173.92
Otsego 203.71   203.71
Ottawa 204.73 24.79 229.52
Presque Isle 310.66 76.56 387.22
Roscommon 300.59   300.59
Saginaw 187.81   187.81
Sanilac 72.57 42.20 114.78
Schoolcraft 942.90 56.25 999.15
Shiawassee 139.43   139.43
St. Clair 57.67 173.92 231.60
St. Joseph 356.23   356.23
Tuscola 99.08 39.65 138.73
Van Buren 422.33 13.93 436.26
Washtenaw 466.50   466.50
Wayne 150.41 41.01 191.42
Wexford 167.38   167.38
Total 25,829.48 3,641.09 29,470.57

GIS Team

Calculating Michigan Shoreline

*Numbers were corrected on January 26, 2016 to fix a small found error in the processing.  The shoreline distance for 10 counties changed slightly, mostly in the 'inland lakes' number between a fraction of a mile up to about 5.42 miles.

Kasey Wilson calculated the shorelines using GIS shapefiles from the Michigan Geographic Data Library (county boundaries and inland lakes) and from the Great Lakes Information Network (Great Lakes). 

To calculate Great Lakes shoreline meters per county:  The county shapefile was converted from polygons to lines.  Then we selected those lines that intersected with the Great Lakes shapefile.  Save as a new shapefile, keeping the county name attributes. Add field to the resulting attribute table and calculate geometry.

To calculate inland lake shoreline meters per county: Perform a union with the county layer, then convert to lines and select those lines that share a line segment with a county boundary and delete them.  Save as a new shapefile, keeping the county name attributes.  Add a field to the resulting attribute table and calculate geometry.

These numbers vary from NOAA's statewide estimate of 3,224 miles, we believe because we included the shores of all Michigan islands present in the shapefiles and because of the differing methodology.

  • Call MSU: (517) 355-1855
  • Visit: msu.edu
  • MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer.
Michigan State University