Closing system

Portage Lake Boating Access Site temporarily closed this week to install accessible features

In an effort to expand the growing list of accessible features on public lands, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Township of Onekama will temporarily close the Portage Lake boating access site in Manistee County to construct new conveniences.

The two-day early closure of this co-managed site will take place on Wednesday and Thursday, June 29 and 30.

The Township of Onekama received $75,900 from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund to install a new accessible kayak and canoe launch system and accessible parking spaces. Additional funding came from the Portage Lake Association and a grant from the Portage Lake Watershed Forever Annual Fund administered by the Manistee County Community Foundation.

The EZ Launch Accessible Kayak and Canoe Launch System, with a slide-out bench and grab bar, is designed to make it easier to get kayaks or canoes into and out of the water. Visitors can pull themselves through the water using side rails and rollers.

Paddlers can use the Onekama Village Park boat launch, located on the north side of Portage Lake, as an alternate access site during the closure.

“We are very pleased with this partnership and very grateful to the Township of Onekama,” said Doug Barry, supervisor of MNR’s Parks and Recreation Division. “Added parking spaces and the EZ Launch kayak and canoe launch system will expand opportunities for all visitors.”

August 7 Ribbon Cutting

The public and media are invited to join Onekama Township and MNR representatives at 10 a.m. Sunday, August 7 for a grand opening of the kayak flotilla from the lake boating access site Carrying.

Further information

For more details on the project, contact Douglas Barry at 231-723-7422 or [email protected]

Anyone planning to visit the Portage Lake Navigation Access Site is encouraged to visit to see any planned changes to the reopening date.

Visit to find information about other accessible outdoor recreation opportunities across the state, including fishing, hunting and more.

Note to editors: An accompanying photo is available below for download. Caption information follows. Credit: Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

  • Accessible Kayak Launch: The accessible kayak launch pictured here at Interlochen State Park looks a lot like the new accessible kayak and canoe launch system that will be installed on the Portage Lake boating access site June 29-30.