In the Petoskey & Charlevoix area, the basic rule is that anywhere you find access to a public Lake Michigan beach can be a good spot to find Petoskey Stones. We recommend that your search should start at the Petoskey State Park. It is a great spring, summer and fall activity. The State Park is 6 miles SE of Harbor Springs on M-119. There are also many other beautiful beaches to choose from. Zorn Park, Magnus Park, Michigan Beach and Mt. McSauba to name a few.
Early Spring is a good time to look for the stone after the ice has melted along the shore. Each year as the ice of Lake Michigan breaks up and the wind shifts the ice back and forth, it pushes a new crop of fossils to the shore. During the summer months the best time to hunt for Petoskey stones is after a wind storm or during a mist rain when the fossil pattern can be seen more clearly.
To give you a little history of the Petoskey Stone, they are actually fossilized colonial corals. Their origin is traced back to the Devonian Period, 355-415 millions years ago. The Petoskey Stone was made Michigan's official state stone by Governor George Romney in 1965.