Discover Torch Lake
Torch Lake is by far Michigan's largest lake by volume. At 19 miles long and 18,770 acres, it is Michigan's second largest lake by area. Portions lay within several townships in Antrim County, including Torch Lake Township, Central Lake Township, Forest Home Township, Helena Township, and Milton Township. Several villages and hamlets lie along its shore, including Alden, Eastport, Clam River, and Torch Lake. The lake is located midway between Traverse City to the south and Petoskey to the north and is separated by narrow strips of land from both Grand Traverse Bay on the northwest and Elk Lake at the southwest end. It has a maximum depth of over 300 feet and an average depth of 111 feet, making it Michigan's deepest inland lake. It is a popular lake for fishing, featuring lake trout, rock bass, yellow perch, smallmouth bass, muskellunge, ciscoes, brown trout, rainbow trout, and whitefish.
The name of the lake is not because of its shape. It is derived from translation from the Ojibwa name Was-wa-gon-ong meaning "Place of the Torches", referring to the practice of the local native American population who once used torches at night to attract fish for harvesting with spears and nets.
Torch Lake is part of a watershed that begins in northern Antrim County with Intermediate Lake, which is connected by the Intermediate River with Lake Bellaire. The Grass River flows from Lake Bellaire into Clam Lake, which in turn drains into Torch Lake via the short Clam River. Torch Lake itself is drained by the Torch River, which flows into Lake Skegemog, which opens into Elk Lake. Elk Lake flows into the east arm of Grand Traverse Bay at Elk Rapids. This watershed is popularly known as the Chain of Lakes.
The lake is noted for its exceptional beauty; its waters are unusually clear and exhibit a bright turquoise hue. This quality has made the lake a popular spot for the development of resorts and second homes.
Resort on Torch Lake Michigan | Email Torchlight Resort | (248) 459-2441