There's an often repeated fact that there's no point in Michigan that's more than 85 miles from a Great Lake. But where exactly is that?

While that 85-mile fact is repeated in many places online, nowhere have I been able to find any reference to what point this is. There are many places that get close and lie about 75-80 miles from a Great Lake. The street corner shown above is in downtown Eaton Rapids at Main and Hamlin. It is, as near as I can figure, as far as you can get from the nearest Great Lake.

Here's the math and the maps.

Eaton Rapids to Lake Michigan

Google Maps Street View
Google Maps Street View
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It's 80 miles to the waters of Lake Michigan south of Saugatuck, near Fennville.

Eaton Rapids to Lake Erie

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Google Maps
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It's 78 miles to Lake Erie near Monroe.

Eaton Rapids to Lake Huron

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Google Maps
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It's even further to get to Lake Huron. The waters of Saginaw Bay at Bay City are 88 miles from downtown Eaton Rapids

Now don't feel too bad for Eaton Rapids. The city certainly isn't waterless. The Grand River flows through the town and an island in the river makes up the city's downtown district.

Is it Really Eaton Rapids?

I tried other locations down the center of the Mitten like Lansing and Coldwater and even a little dot on the map called Ray near where Michigan, Indiana and Ohio meet and each of them was closer to one of the Great Lakes than Eaton Rapids was.

And there's no place in the Upper Peninsula, even interior locations like Iron River, that's more than 50 miles or so from either Lake Michigan or Superior.

So unless someone can prove it differently, Eaton Rapids wins as the most Great Lake-deprived place in Michigan.

Scanning the map for a project like this you're bound to find some interesting place names. These are the best on the map:

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