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Drinking water Recreational water Fish consumption Lake by lake Other issues Resources and references

Recreational water in the Great Lakes

Recreational water
    in the Great Lakes

Beaches | Boating | Swimming
Critical contaminants

Boating
Erie | Huron | Michigan | Ontario | Superior

Lake Erie
For more information about the recreational use of Lake Erie water, please see the beaches and swimming sections.

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Lake Huron
For more information about the recreational use of Lake Huron water, please see the beaches section.

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Lake Michigan
Sport fishing and recreational boating anchor an important marine-coastal recreation sector of the area economy. According to the 1991 national fishing and hunting survey, 34 percent of all Great Lakes anglers fished in Lake Michigan, a close second to Lake Erie (35%). These 868,000 anglers were estimated to have spent US$454 million on their trips and equipment-related items. The stocking of huge numbers of trout and salmon has been a fundamental part of this fishing success story.

The number of recreational boats operated on Lake Michigan each year is estimated at 400,000, or nearly half of the number for all the Great Lakes. Although boating has a strong connection to fishing, which relies on clean water and productive fish stocks, much of the boating activity is tied to marina and new residential development, which alters nearshore habitat and degrades water quality in localized areas.

Around the southern shore of Lake Michigan, about 1,000 new slips were added per year in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In Indiana, for example, Lake Michigan boat slips increased from 1,100 in 1985 to 2,700 in 1991, though many new marinas in Indiana are being built on previously developed sites.

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Lake Ontario
For more information about the recreational use of Lake Ontario water, please see the beaches section.

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Lake Superior
For more information about the recreational use of Lake Superior water, please see the beaches and swimming sections.

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