State of the Beach/State Reports/MI/Surfing Areas

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Michigan Ratings
Indicator Type Information Status
Beach Access77
Water Quality66
Beach Erosion7-
Erosion Response-6
Beach Fill4-
Shoreline Structures4 3
Beach Ecology3-
Surfing Areas26
Coastal Development{{{19}}}{{{20}}}
Sea Level Rise{{{21}}}{{{22}}}

Inventory and Perception of Status

Believe it or not, there are at least 64 well-known surfing spots along Lake Michigan. Most good surf spots are located adjacent to shoreline structures like jetties and piers. Surfing locations include Holland, Grand Haven, Muskegon, South Haven, Ludington and Traverse City. People come from as far away as the Chicago and Milwaukee areas to surf these spots.

The surf spots are generally in fair condition. However, concerns have been raised about water quality. Only the state and city beaches are tested, and there have been an increasing number of beach closures due to high bacteria levels. Awareness of this problem has been increasing in the press and in local and state governments. Lake Michigan provides a wide variety of water recreation opportunities, with beach and boating access as high priorities. Windsurfing is a popular sport along the Great Lakes as well as in various inland waters.

Recognition by State

Michigan does not recognize surfing as an economic, cultural, and recreational resource.

Surfrider Foundation Chapters

Lake Michigan Chapter43° 3' 47.06" N, 86° 13' 42.19" W

<html><fieldset class="rcoptions"> <legend></html>Lake Michigan Chapter<html></legend></html> Lake Michigan Chapter Website

Surfrider Foundation has a chapter based in Grand Haven, Michigan. If you live or surf in the area and want to help protect Lake Michigan and its waves and beaches, check their website


Elsewhere on Lake Michigan, Surfrider has a Milwaukee Chapter and a Chicago Chapter.

Lake Superior

If you live or surf in Minnesota, get involved with our Minnesota-Superior Chapter. More on Lake Superior surfing.

Information Sources

Sources of information on surfing on the Great Lakes include:

State of the Beach Report: Michigan
Michigan Home Beach Description Beach Access Water Quality Beach Erosion Erosion Response Beach Fill Shoreline Structures Beach Ecology Surfing Areas Website
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