RICHLAND, MI – It’s known for great boating and sailing, deep waters and consistent lake levels with beautiful homes.

It’s Gull Lake, and it’s the winner of Michigan’s Best Inland Lake in Kalamazoo and Southwestern Michigan by MLive readers.

Also known for great fishing, Gull Lake received more than 43 percent of the vote, easily beating out Pine Lake in Plainwell, which had nearly 18 percent of the vote.

See the Top 5 vote getters in the region, as well as complete results below.

According to the Michigan DNR:

“This 2,030 acre lake is deeper than its large-lake neighbor (Gun Lake) with a maximum depth of 110 feet. It too crosses two counties; Barry and Kalamazoo, and is referred to as a two-story fishery. That means it has an oxygenated cold-water component which allows for coldwater species, (including) inland trout and salmon. Just as with Gun Lake, it should be noted that Gull Lake is one of the most popular waterbodies in the state for bass tournaments.”

MLive readers said of Gull Lake:

“It is a big lake, but friendly,” said Bonnie Darkey of New Milford, NJ, formally from Battle Creek and Grand Rapids.

“Beauty, length, deep, nice houses,” said Nelson Nave of Kalamazoo.

“Large, sand bar, beautiful homes and all sports,” said Paul Morris of Elkhart, Ind.

“Best clean all around lake,” said Dean Pominville of Portage,

“Cool spring fed and clear and tremendous variety of fishing from panfish, perch to trout and salmon,” said J.C. Schelb.

“Pretty blue, just like you’re in the Caribbean!” said Joe Knecht of Richland.

In addition, we loved this passionate plea from Jill Bland, “who had the opportunity to grow up on Gull Lake, 1962-1979,” and still lives in the area.

“Gull Lake is (one of) my favorite places. It is one of the deeper, large, inland lakes in Michigan with exceptional water quality for boating, floating water skiing, canoeing, swimming, and scuba diving. Because of its size, it is a wonderful sailing lake. In the winter it is fantastic for ice skating and ice boating, especially if it freezes enough before a snow and the ice remains clear. It has some of the best and most diverse fishing in the area as the State’s fishery programs help to keep it stocked. It has become busier over the years, as more and more people discover the beauty and fun that it has to offer, and it has transitioned from a summer home community to a year around community. Many fond memories of watching the 4th of July fireworks sitting on our raft.”

Learn more about Gull Lake on Facebook at

A Fourth of July Parade is planned July 3 in Richland. The community fireworks are July 4. More info at

DNR info at

Michigan’s Best Inland Lake – Kalamazoo & SW Michigan

1. Gull Lake, Richland – 43.26%

2. Pine Lake, Plainwell – 17.81%

3. Asylum Lake, Kalamazoo – 10.18%

4. Paw Paw Lake, Coloma – 9.67%

5. Diamond Lake, Cassapolis – 4.33%

Full Poll Results here:

Michigan's Best Bloody Mary

The Dock at Bayview was a Top 10 pick for Michigan’s Best Bloody Mary in 2016. It is located in August, Michigan, near Gull Lake.Amy Sherman

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Best Bloody Mary: Top 10 pick at The Dock at Bayview in Augusta

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If you want to suggest a future Michigan’s Best search or you have an idea for a story, feel free to email us.

Amy Sherman:

John Gonzalez:

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Join in by using the hashtag #mibest. Our most recent search is for Michigan’s Best Inland Lake.

In addition:

Amy Sherman is on Twitter @amyonthetrail, as well as Facebook and Instagram @amyonthetrail.

John Gonzalez is on Twitter @michigangonzo, as well as Facebook and Instagram @MichiganGonzo.


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