Bryan Beckwith
Real Estate One (231) 631-2913

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Bryan A. Beckwith
Associate Broker
Tel: (231) 631-2913
Fax: (888) 275-4099
511 East Front St.
Traverse City, MI 49686

Linda Leppek
Licensed Assistant
to Bryan Beckwith
Tel: (231) 944-0130

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Chain of Lakes Waterfront and Vacant Acreage

For Pre Searched Property Details For This And Other Northern Michigan
Waterfront & Vacant Acreage, Click On The Left-Hand Links Below


Chain Of Lakes Michiganreal estate image.


Video Documentaries On The Chain Of Lakes:
Torch Lake, Elk Lake, Torch Lake Fireworks
Chain Of Lakes Pictorial
Chain Of Lakes Map Chain Of Lakes links:
Torch Lake Real Estate>
Elk Lake Real Estate
Skegemog Lake Real Estate
Grand Traverse Bay Waterfront
Lake Michigan Real Estate

Chain Of Lakes Information:

UPPER Chain Of Lakes: 
Six Mile Lake, Hanley Lake, Benway Lake,
Wilson Lake, Ellsworth Lake, St. Clair Lake

LOWER Chain Of Lakes: 
Intermediate Lake
Lake Bellaire
Clam Lake
Torch Lake
Lake Skegemog
Elk Lake Chain Of Lakes Tour:

(under construction)

to the most current & comprehensive Chain Of Lakes Waterfront Real Estate Web Site.

Chain of Lakes Real Estate Geography

The chain of lakes system begins with the upper stage of the Intermediate River, in the northwest corner of Chestonia Township in central Antrim County. From here, the northern Michigan waterway traverses a number of small lakes flowing north, then making a sharp turn near the village of Ellsworth, flows south through a narrow valley, paralleling the tracks of the Pere Marquette Railroad, until emptying into Intermediate Lake. The outlet of Intermediate Lake converges with the Cedar River in the village of Bellaire, gaining considerable volume. Now a river of substantial flow, it continues south into 1,700-acre (6.9 km2) Lake Bellaire. Leaving the lake, the stream becomes the Grass River, winding for some two miles (3 km) through the scenic Grass River Natural Area before emptying into Clam Lake. Clam Lake in turn empties directly into Torch Lake. At over 18,000 acres (73 km2) in size, Torch Lake is the largest body of water in the system. The waterway, now clarified after traversing the immense depths of the lake, continues south through the Torch River, joins with the Rapid River, a major tributary, and empties into Lake Skegemog, a 2,500-acre (10 km2) lake that is studded with large stump fields, the result of the flooding of timberlands when the lake level was raised several feet by the construction of the dam at the terminus of the system. Lake Skegemog, which is the meeting point of Grand Traverse, Kalkaska and Antrim counties, is conjoined at its western end to 7,700-acre (31 km2) Elk Lake, the second-largest and final lake in the system. The outflow of Elk Lake, the Elk River, flows a short distance to a power dam in the town of Elk Rapids, then out into the east arm of the Grand Traverse Bay of Lake Michigan at 44°54′06″N 85°24′49″WCoordinates: 44°54′06″N 85°24′49″W. For most of its length, “The Chain” is navigable by small boat, broken up only by a dam in Bellaire. Larger boats are able to navigate between Elk Rapids and Torch Lake.

Chain of Lakes Waterfront History

Various tribes of primarily Ojibwa native Americans inhabited the northwest lower michigan region when the first white settlers began to arrive in the middle of the 19th century to attempt farming. The thin soils and short, cool summers around made traditional farming difficult, and the region remained sparsely settled until the 1880s, when lumber interests began exploiting the region's vast tracts of white pine forests. The waterway provided an excellent means of transporting logs down to sawmills located along the way. The arrival of the railroads in the 1890s accelerated lumbering and other economic activities, and brought in visitors from distant places, who marveled at the natural beauty of lakes and rivers of the chain, turning it into a major destination for vacationers from downstate and elsewhere. Scores of resorts cropped up on the shorelines of all the major lakes of the system, catering to fisherman and wild-life enthusiasts. By 1910, the lumber era had all but passed, and many once prosperous towns and villages in the area went into decline. Many of the region's farmers, having failed to get decent yields of traditional crops, either moved on, or turned to cultivation of fruit crops, most notably cherries, as the area's sandy soil and cool lake climate were found to be favorable for growing such produce. Fruit farming and tourism became, and remain, the leading economic activities of the region.

Michigan DNR
Michigan DNR Homepage

DNR Michigan PDF Lake Maps

DNR Info. on Northern Michigan

Community Info

Antrim County Demographics Profile


The Chain of Lakes Watershed is a seventy-five mile-long waterway consisting of fourteen lakes and connecting rivers in the northwestern section of the Lower Peninsula of the U.S. state of Michigan, which empty into Lake Michigan. The watershed includes 500 square miles (1,300 km2) in Antrim County, Charlevoix County, Grand Traverse County, and Kalkaska County. The watershed includes a series of fourteen lakes and interconnecting rivers. From the uppermost lake in the chain, Beals Lake in Echo Township, Antrim County, the water flows 55 miles (89 km) and drops 40 feet (12 m) in elevation. It has over 200 miles (320 km) of shoreline and almost 60 square miles (160 km2) of water surface.


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(231) 631-2913

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