The Great Lakes consists of five lakes which are Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Ontario and Lake Erie. These five lakes are spread throughout Michigan,Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and Canada. Michigan is the only state that touches four out of the five lakes which would be why Michigan’s name means “large lake” in Ojibwa. The Great Lakes are one of the most recognizable bodies of freshwater in the world and was formed around 12,000 years ago from glacier activity. As the glaciers melted and started to move toward Canada, water then filled in behind the glaciers.
Together, the Great Lakes total 84% of North America’s surface freshwater and 21% of the world’s freshwater. The Great Lakes also cover around 94,000 square miles of water. The coastline of the Great Lakes totals 10,900 miles while Michigan’s Great Lakes coastline totals 3,288 of that. Lake Michigan and Lake Huron are connected by the Straits of Mackinac while Lake Erie and Lake Ontario are connected by the Niagara River where the Niagara falls is located. The Great Lakes contains around 30,000 islands with Lake Huron having the largest which is Manitoulin Island.
The Upper Peninsula is surrounded by three of the five Great Lakes including Lake Superior, Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. Lake Superior is located to the north of the Upper Peninsula while Lakes Michigan and Huron are to the south with the Mackinac Bridge separating the two. However, the majority of the Upper Peninsula only has access to Lake Michigan and Lake Superior.