Burt Lake

Burt Lake is a “waterman’s” playground in Northern Michigan for boating, fishing, and all outdoor enthusiasts. 

It is approximately 9 miles from the Crooked River Locks to Burt Lake and roughly 4 miles from Burt Lake to Mullett Lake along the Inland Water Route.  

Quick facts:

  • Max Length – 10 miles
  • Max width – 5 miles
  • Surface area – 17,120 acres
  • Max depth – 73 feet

Burt Lake was named after William Austin Burt, a surveyor. Burt Lake was surveyed between 1840 and 1843. William Burt has a very interesting history, click here for more info.

Indian River

Indian River is at the center of the famed Inland Water Route. It is on the southwest shore of Burt Lake. Nestled snuggly between Burt and Mullett Lakes, Indian River is also home to both the Indian River and the Sturgeon River. It is found at Exit 310 off of I-75.

For more information about the Indian River area:

Indian River Tourist Bureau

Indian River Chamber of Commerce

There are campgrounds, restaurants, shopping, ice cream shops, mini-golf, and more on Burt Lake. 

Burt Lake – lots to do!

DeVoe Beach

DeVoe Beach offers a lovely beach with grills, picnic areas, a pavilion, restrooms, and a wheelchair-accessible fishing pier at the mouth of the Indian River (the Veteran’s Memorial Pier).

Burt Lake State Park

Located on the southeast shore of Burt Lake, Burt Lake State Park has 406 acres of year-round recreation area, just south of downtown Indian River off of M-68 highway. There are over 300 modern (mostly wooded) campsites and toilet/ shower buildings for guests to use. There is a large day-use/ sandy swim area, boat launch, Burt Lake- Foot hiking trail, and cross-country (non-groomed) ski trails. For more information click here. Must have a park pass to enter.

Maple Bay State Forest Campground

A rustic campground located on the northwest side of Burt Lake. Get here from Brutus Road; south on Maple Bay Road. The campground is on the right side along the shore of the lake. Camping is on a first-come, first-served basis. There are 35 campsites available for tents and small trailers. There is a boat launch at the end of Maple Bay Road. The campground isn’t open in the winter. For more information, click here.

Hike-able Preserves Along Burt Lake

Chaboiganing Preserve/ Indian Point Memorial Forest

Located on Burt Lake’s Indian Point, the Chaboiganing Preserve and the adjacent Indian Point Memorial Forest have a combined 484 acres and 5.6 miles of trails for hiking and skiing.

There are two trailheads for the area.

  1. Chaboiganing Preserve can be accessed on Brutus Road, approximately 4 miles east of US-31 highway, across from the old Burt Lake Market.
  2. Colonial Point Memorial Forest is 1/4 east of the Chaboiganing Preserve on Indian Point Road.

It is a beautiful area with both wooded areas and open fields. A wonderfully peaceful place to reset. More information can be found at the Little Traverse Conservancy site here.

Harris Melvin Family Preserve – 7 acres located at the end of Ellinger Road in Tuscarora Township.

Seven Springs Nature Preserve – approximately 67 acres on the east shore of Burt Lake. Get here by turning west onto Prospect Road, just north of the M-27 bridge in Indian River. Then continue straight onto Chippewa beach road just 1 mile. Look for the preserve sign, it is easy to miss! Seven Springs offers great hiking and better views. There are 1.2 miles of trails and a lake overlook.

Hildner- Bearce/ Waubun/ Davis Family Nature Preserves – 46 acres split by Chippewa Beach Road with a short, community trail. Take Waubun Road one mile to Waubun Beach Road then go North to Chippewa Beach Road.

Sturgeon Bay Nature Preserve – 40 acres with two-track roads for hiking. From S Straits Highway, turn onto Eagles Nest Road. Take the second left turn for Sturgeon Bay Road.

An interactive map of the preserves can be found here.


Read our post about fishing on Burt Lake here.

Burt Lake Trail

The Burt Lake Trail is 6.8 miles of trail with a mix of paved sections and crushed stone from West Burt Lake Road to Mullett- Burt Road. Future connections are planned. For more information and updates from the Top of Michigan Trails click here.

Camp Al-Gon-Quian (YMCA)

Offering an overnight camp experience for campers aged 8-16. Camp Al-Gon-Quain is located off of M-68 highway between Rogers Road and Resort Road. The camp was started in 1925. For more information, click here.

The Cross in the Woods

A National Shrine, the Cross in the Woods is the second largest crucifix in the world! Located just off M-68, the shrine stands 55 feet high and is 22 feet wide. The cross was completed in 1954 and the Crucifix was completed in 1959. Visitors are welcome. For more information, click here.

Hoppies Tavern

Located at 7987 Mullett- Burt Road, Cheboygan, Hoppies is a Burt Lake must. Read their reviews here.

Get there by boat, find Hoppies at the northeast end of Burt Lake, and use their dock to tie up.

Real Estate

2021 Real Estate Market on Burt Lake:

  • Highest list price $3,250,000
  • Highest sale price $3,100,000
  • Average list price $1,409,153
  • Average sale price $1,413,973

The average time spent on the market was 116 days.

For information on active listings contact us or search here.

Information provided by the Northern Michigan MLS (12/31/2021), interpreted by Coldwell Banker Fairbairn Realty.

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