Torch Lake Boating Trail

Want to take your own watercraft on the Torch Lake Boat Trail?

REMEMBER: inland lakes in Michigan have different rules from the Great Lakes.

  • On Inland lakes, the shoreland and bottomlands are private property.
  • Please respect all private property around the lake.
  • Use only the public access points to reach the shore.
  • Public Access Points vary in width, so stay within the public access boundaries.
  • Please do not trespass on neighboring private properties.


CAUTION: There is a strong current where Clam River flows into Torch Lake. Stay in the channel markers as you approach the river to avoid boulders.  Gas pumps for your watercraft are located on the south side of the river as you enter. Do not attempt to turn around in the narrow river. Proceed ¼ mile into the wider Clam Lake to turn around.


  • Launch at Alden Harbor*, head north along the eastern shore, past the mouth of Clam River.
  • From Clam River, continue north past Yacht Club Point—all the sailboats will help you identify this point.
  • Enjoy a picnic at the Forest Home Township Family Day Park*.


  • Continue to the north end of the lake.
  • Take a beach break at the MDNR Boat Launch*.

WESTERN SHORE            

  • Loop around and travel south, along the western shore.
  • Need another pit stop and a chance to stretch your legs?
  • Anchor off the Torch Lake Township W. K. Good Day Park* for a swim,
  • or a run around their grass or volleyball court.
  • Head south to the southern sandy end of the lake.


  • Make a pit stop at the MDNR Boat Launch*.
  • After a swim near the south end’s Sand Bar, head back to Alden for ice cream.
  • Hope you enjoyed your day on the most beautiful lake in Michigan!

*Toilet facilities

Public Boat Launches Map (.pdf)

Free Printable

Public Boat Launches

  • 6 around the Torch Lake.
  • Please use public restrooms.
  • Maintained by local townships & MDNR.
  • Pay the $11 fee at MDNR launches.
  • Respect the neighbors’ private property.

Don't just wish that Torch Lake will stay blue.
Choose a water-friendly lifestyle - make a difference!