The Inland Waterway or Inland Water Route is a series of rivers and lakes in the U.S. state of Michigan. With only a short portage, it forms a navigable route for small craft connecting Lake Huron and Lake Michigan across the Northern Michigan region.
The route is in Emmet and Cheboygan counties and consists of Round Lake, Iduna Creek, Crooked Lake, Crooked River, Burt Lake, Indian River, Mullett Lake, and the Cheboygan River.
The route passes through or near the communities of Conway, Oden, Ponshewaing, Alanson, Indian River, Topinabee, and Cheboygan.
The Inland Waterway was originally used by Native Americans to avoid the strong waves around Waugoshance Point on Lake Michigan. Consequently, fifty Indian encampments have been discovered along the shores of the Inland Water Route. One such encampment, located in Ponshewaing, has artifacts dating back over 3,000 years.