Leach Lake, Michigan, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - Midwest - Michigan - Southwest -

A hidden treasure awaits at Leach Lake. This small lake lies in the Southwest Region of Michigan and is often overshadowed by larger, more well-known lakes. But the mostly-private 125-acre lake offers a world of water enjoyment for the lucky visitor. Actually three small lake basins connected by narrow channels, this lake was formed when retreating glaciers left huge blocks of ice behind. These kettle lakes often have odd shapes, varying depths and are often both spring-fed and gain water from small streams. The smallest, westernmost lobe of the lake and the middle basin hold most of the cottages along the shore. The easternmost lobe is less populated and surrounded by wooded wetlands. The wooded shoreline attracts a variety of wildlife, making canoeing and kayaking on the small lake a delight.

Located about five miles north of Hastings, Leach Lake is an ideal spot for a close-to-home lake vacation. Only 45 miles from Lansing, 37 miles from Kalamazoo and 38 miles from Grand Rapids, Leach Lake can easily be reached in an afternoon from much of Michigan. However, those who arrive here often find it hard to leave . . .there is so much to see and do!

Leach Lake is an all-sports lake. Residents and visitors enjoy water skiing, pontooning, paddle-boating, kayaking, and canoeing on the normally quiet waters. The shape of the three basins is such that sailing and windsurfing can be very enjoyable along the northeast-southwest stretch of water. Because there is no public beach and only a small public boat launch, the water is seldom crowded. The lake would be virtually unknown except to fishermen if it were not for the fact that vacation rentals exist along the shore. The lake supported a small resort for many years which has recently re-opened to visitors. Most properties on the lake advertise sandy beaches and private swim areas, with the possibility of campfires on the beach while listening to the night sounds of a lake at dusk. Although the lake offers some deeper areas, the descent is gradual, making for ideal swim conditions. One couldn’t ask for a more delightful, peaceful Michigan vacation than a week or even a month at Leach Lake.

Anglers report the lake offers excellent fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill, pike, perch and crappie. The gravel boat ramp at the northeast corner of the lake opens at four a.m. for those who hope to offer breakfast to the local fish population. The lake is nearly as popular in winter, when ice fishing takes over. Leach Lake makes an ideal base camp for nearby cross-country ski trails, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. A small stream connects Leach Lake with Middle Lake to the east. The stream is not navigable, but there is a public boat launch on Middle Lake also. With the town of Hastings only a few short miles away, Leach Lake is an ideal choice for the self-catered vacation cottage; Hasting is the typical small rural town, with restaurants, movie theaters, grocery stores and all services.

The small size of Hastings belies the opportunities for outdoor recreation and activities the area is known for. Besides several in-town parks and even recreation trails, nearby Charlton Park offers a wealth of history. An entire small village has been restored here along the scenic Thornapple River, including homes, businesses and local landmarks that have been moved here and restored to their original state. All are furnished with original antiques and relics of Barry County’s early history. In addition to the village, Charlton Park offers 310 acres of river and lake frontage, with a public bathing beach, boat launch, picnic shelters, volleyball and softball fields. The park is the site of many special interest events during the year, including car shows, Civil War re-enactments, Pow Wows, antique gas and steam engine shows, and flea markets. The Thornapple River itself is a popular canoeing and kayaking destination. As Leach Lake is only eight miles away, the lake makes a great spot to stay for a weekend of flea markets or antique shows.

Just 15 miles southwest of Leach Lake, Yankee Springs Recreation Area And Barry State Game Area offer 22,000 acres of public land for nature observation, hiking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing and bird watching. Gun Lake, located within the Recreation Area is available for camping, fishing and swimming. Some trails in the area are barrier-free. Wild turkeys and sandhill cranes are numerous in the area, as are deer and smaller mammals. Much of the area is available for hunting during the appropriate season.

Those choosing to enjoy the occasional bigger-city amenities during a stay can drive to Grand Rapids or Kalamazoo in about 30 minutes. The Frederic Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids holds 132 acres of outdoor sculpture along with manicured landscape gardens in many configurations. Kalamazoo holds a variety of nightlife and sports venues of particular interest to young adults. As a university town, Kalamazoo offers an eclectic assortment of shops, restaurants and unusual entertainment activities sure to please everyone in the group.

A vacation rental on Leach Lake could easily start a family tradition: it’s not unusual for families to return to a favorite cottage or cabin year after year. Both rustic cabins and luxurious year-round residences can be found along the lakefront. Those wanting more organized activities can choose a resort cottage. Hotels and motels can be found in Hastings and in the larger cities nearby, or families can choose one of the many local campgrounds on nearby lakes. And the occasional bed-and-breakfast can provide a special romantic get-away in the area. Real estate is often found near Leach Lake, although not often with lake frontage. So make your reservations and start your newest family tradition now. We know you’ll be back year after year!

Things to do at Leach Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Water Skiing
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Snowmobiling
  • Hunting
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • Movie Theater
  • Antiquing

Fish species found at Leach Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Sunfish

Leach Lake Photo Gallery

    Leach Lake Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

    Surface Area: 125 acres

    Shoreline Length: 2 miles

    Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 801 feet

    Maximum Depth: 40 feet

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

    You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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