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Camping In The Upper Peninsula Of Michigan

Fj Mcclain State Park

Upper Peninsula Michigan Camping/Campground GEM!

McClain is located about 20 miles west of Hancock on Lake Superior near the western end of the Portage Canal. Scenic views, beautiful sand beaches, and a cooling night breeze off Lake Superior are among the features that make FJ McClain one of the more popular Upper Peninsula parks. All 98 campsites have electrical service. Reservations are recommended for July and August as well as September weekends.

Check The Weather Pack Extra

Depending on where you live, whether in the U.P. could be a little colder at times-especially if youre near one of the Great Lakes or enjoying a fallcamping trip.

Be sure to pack an extra sweater or hoodie, a pair of long pants, and socks. You may have those on your list in the spring or fall, but bring at least one of each in the summer too.

It can get chilly at night

Campgrounds In The Upper Peninsula Of Michigan

Some of which are among the best Great Lakes campgrounds in Michigan state parks!

This list will focus on Michigan state park campgrounds.

The parks on this list arent the only UP Michigan state parks with campgrounds. But location wise, these are among the best to choose when youre going for a road trip around the Upper Peninsula!

If youre looking for campgrounds that are spaced out around the UP, heres the visual on a map of the general locations of the campgrounds youll find on the list!

Explore the map.

As you can see, you can select Michigan state park campgrounds to make a loop around the UP for a perfect Upper Peninsula road trip, Michigan state park style!

Camping with a Lake Superior beach that can be a less than 1 minute walk away

There are no campsites with views of Lake Superior at the Brimley State Park campground, but its a short walk to the Lake Superior beach! This can be a great sunset spot.

The Brimley State Park campground is a campground thats near Sault St Marie and the Soo Locks.

Brimley State Park: See more about this UP campground

Recommended Reading: High Point State Park Camping

You Cant Go Wrong Camping In The Up At Hiawatha National Forest

The Hiawatha National Forest is one of the best National Parks in the Midwest.

Its absolutely beautiful and has some great hiking trails to explore.

Thats part of the reason its frequently considered one of the best Upper Peninsula campgrounds.

Hiawatha National Forest has a variety of campgrounds and camping situations on offer.

They have 2 cabins you can rent, 5 different campsite zones with over 100 campsites, and you can even try dispersed camping.

Dispersed camping is where you can camp anywhere within the National Forest.

It doesnt have to be a designated campsite, which is a really cool way to try camping in the UP!

Munising Tourist Park Campground

Eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan a few weeks ago #camping #hiking # ...

Munising Tourist Park is a municipal campground located 3 miles west of the town of Munising. This modern campground is on the shores of Lake Superior and offers many waterfront sites. Walk-in rustic tent sites are available along the water.

There is a shower house, laundry facilities, and wifi available.

Two nights is recommended for Munising.

Optional Camping near Munising

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore has 67 campsites over three campgrounds. There are no water, electric, or sewer sites in the lakeshore. We opted to stay at Munising campground because campsites at Pictured Rocks were first come first serve at that time. Now you can reserve sites to make sure you have a place to stay. This is particularly important during July and August.

Things to do in Munising

Seeing the amazing Pictured Rocks shoreline is a must! You can take a guided tour boat or rent kayaks.

Take a ferry to Grant Island. Explore by foot or bike or take the 3 hour Grand Island Interpretive Bus Tour.

Area shipwrecks can be seen by diving or boat tour. Other area activities include hiking, mountain biking, and seeing waterfalls.

Also Check: Collapsible Water Tank For Camping

Bay Furnace Campground Hiawatha National Forest

Lake Superior lakefront camping!

Explore the map: Bay Furnace campground, Hiawatha National Forest

Proximity to Lake Superior: The Bay Furnace campground is right along Lake Superior. You can get a campsite that is directly next to Lake Superior! Depending on your campsite location, you may be a minutes walk or less from the shoreline.


Island camping near Lake Superior: Isle Royale National Park

You can catch a ferry to Isle Royale National Park from Copper Harbor or Houghton, both towns located in the Keweenaw Peninsula. This is Michigans only true national park. There are campgrounds on Isle Royale. You can make it a backpacking trip around Isle Royale National Park.

Its also possible to access Isle Royale from Minnesota. There is a ferry from Grand Portage MN.

In 2020, the ferry services to Isle Royale were cancelled for the season because of public health safety reasons. Check for updates about 2021.

Free Ottawa National Forest Site Near The Porcupine Mountains

GPS Coordinates: 46.70982, -89.76244

This free dispersed Upper Peninsula camping area is in the Ottawa National Forest, right at the border of Porcupine Mountain State Park.

There are some established firepits and picnic tables, and some camping areas provide more privacy than others among the tall Upper Peninsula pines.

Large RVs should have no problem accessing this free camping area, as its a smooth gravel road off of South Boundary Road.

Hopefully some of these free camping areas in Michigans Upper Peninsula can help you save some money during your next road trip or U.P. camping trip! Theyre a great way to save money, get away from crowds, and enjoy the area.

If you need tips on how to wild camp or boondock away from amenities, check out some of the related posts below, or to get new posts sent right to your inbox.

As always, thanks for reading!

Also Check: Good Sam Camping Club Membership

Craig Lake State Park

Craig Lake State Park has two cabins, a yurt, and allows camping amongst its 8,400 acres of forest and six lakes. It is the most remote of the state parks tucked up in the Upper Peninsula. Visitors are further reduced due to there being no vehicle access for any type of accommodations. All supplies must be brought in by foot from the parking lot.

The advantage of this no-vehicles beyond the main camp parking is that it is a perfect place for those that love the wild outdoors. The nearly 7,000 acres is known as moose country. But there are also deer, loons, bald eagles, owls, mink, black bears, and more.

So yes, it is 1,000 feet to the waters edge from where you have to ditch your rig. Which is heavy going if youve got a pack and kayak or canoe. But the rewards for your efforts are enormous.


  • Rustic Sites

See Gorgeous Views Of The Bay At Kleinke Park

Solo Camping in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Kleinke Park is actually a county park located about 13 miles north of Menominee, MI.

Its location provides it with some of the best views of the Bay.

If youre camping in Upper Peninsula Michigan at Kleinke Park, you can even go swimming in the Bay.

Swim at your own risk though, as there is no lifeguard on duty.

You can also just relax on the sandy shore, or use the boat launch to go boating in the Bay.

There are a number of campsites at the park and they all include 50 amp service, so you can bring your RV.

This campground in the Upper Peninsula also has a bathhouse that has flushing toilets, sinks, and even showers.

Its one of the best places for camping in the UP.

Also Check: How To Get Wifi When Camping

Michigan Boondocking Locations In The Lower Peninsula

Elevation: 958

Management: Public Forest Service

Michigan boondocking locations at McKinley Horse Camp is open all year. Nice quiet place, easy access for larger vehicles. Basically a horse camping trailhead, so respect those users. Vault toilets are clean and non smelly . Saw one other truck drive thru mid week when I stayed overnight. Water was not available, and the spigot was labeled non-potable anyway.

Fort Wilkens Historic State Park

This park occupies an isthmus between Lake Fanny Hooe and Lake Superior. All of the facilities face Fanny Hoe but there are hiking trails and scenic overlooks of Lake Superior. The park service also operates tours of the historic Copper Harbor Lighthouse complex and manages the Fort Wilkens Historic preservation exhibit that occupies the center of the park. 165 camp sites, electric hookups, and modern washrooms with showers. It is a great family campground. Near enough to Copper Harbor and its attractions but far enough away that the kids have lots of room to run around. For RVers, one of the two campgrounds is laid out with pull-throughs for large units .

If Fort Williams is full, consider nearby Lake Fanny Hooe Resort & Campground. We’ve stayed there a few times and have been satisfied with the maintenance and service. A plus is that it’s within walking distance of downtown Copper Harbor.

You May Like: San Luis Obispo County Parks Camping

How To Choose Camping In The Upper Peninsula: The Buying Guide

How do you choose the camping in the upper peninsula? You must consider many things, such as the brand name, price, and product quality. In addition, you should also consider whether it is suitable for your needs or not.

So how do you choose the right camping in the upper peninsula? Here are some tips that you can use to help you find a good product:

  • You first need to consider the product’s brand name. A good brand will always produce quality products, so a product with an established name should be good enough for your needs.
  • You need to consider the product’s price next. A high-quality product does not always mean that it will cost more, but if it costs too much, there must be something wrong with it, or nobody will buy it!
  • The final thing you need to look at is how well suited this item is for your needs and requirements and how well suited it is for others with similar requirements!
  • What you Should Keep in Mind When Buying camping in the upper peninsula

    When shopping for a camping in the upper peninsula, there are several things to consider. You need to think about the quality of the product, the price, and even how much it will benefit your life. However, you also need to keep these factors in mind:

    Castle Rock Road St Ignace Mi

    Camping in Michigan Upper Peninsula


    Elevation: 1468

    Management: Public Forest Service

    The road in is Gravel and 5 miles miles from a paved road. Paint Forks campground is open may 1 to nov 30. There are 1-5 Free Michigan camping spots at this location and the maximum RV length is 45 foot or more. This is a free national forest campground in the Ottawa National Forest. There are 4 lovely wooded sites, a pitcher pump, and an outhouse. Not overly maintained, so expect high weeds or picking up some fallen branches as a form of payment for staying there!

    Recommended Reading: Camping World Golden Phone Number

    Union Corners At Huron Nf

    Address1755 S. Mitchell St. Cadillac, MI 49601Rose City, MichiganElevation: 1168

    Management: Public Forest Service

    The road in is Dirt. Union Corners at Huron NF is open Year Round. There are 1-5 Free Michigan camping spots at this location and the maximum RV length is 15 feet. You may stay 14 days at Union Corners at Huron NF. You might fit a small camper in there assuming you can get down the road which is passable by most passenger cars.

    Straits State Park St Ignace

    Straits State Park. This is a great location in relation to Mackinac Island, just over the Mackinac Bridge on the edge of St. Ignace. Its a popular spot for camping in the UP, with good, clean facilities and a nice home base for exploring the area. Its got a nice viewing platform, with views of the bridge and the boats traveling to and from the island. There are 20, 30 and 50-amp, full hookups, with a fire ring, a picnic area, playground, recreation trail, and swimming beach. Shower and toilet facilities are available, and the campground does take pets. Rates are $30 $42 per night.

    Read Also: Camping World Bowling Green Ky

    Drummond Island Rv Park

    Drummond Island RV Park is a great choice if you are visiting the island to check out Turtle Ridge Off-Road Park, or just want to get away and enjoy a relaxing camping experience.

    R.V. sites here are full hook-up and each site has a picnic table. In addition, Drummond Island RV also offers wi-fi and satellite tv, a basketball court, shuffleboard, a pool, a fish cleaning house, laundry facilities, and boat ramp/docks.

    And best of all canoes, kayaks, and paddleboats are free to use if you stay here!

    If youre looking for a great location to enjoy nature and family activities, consider staying at Drummond Island RV Park.

    Interested in staying at this campground? Here are a few tips:

    • in an effort to keep smoke from bothering neighbors, sites do not have a fire pit. A central firepit is available or it may be possible to bring a portable propane fire pit
    • dogs are allowed for a small fee
    • tent camping is not usually possible unless you are part of a Jeep group
    • be sure to check the ferry schedule before you leave for times and prices
    • reservations can be made by calling 493-5445 or 493-5445

    Thinking About A Visit To The Michigan Upper Peninsula Here Are 10 Spectacular Campgrounds In The Up

    RV Camping in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (The U.P. !!!)

    Jennifer and I absolutely love the Michigans Upper Peninsula. Some people call it Gods Country and we have to agree. Its that spectacular. The shores of three Great Lakes encircle it and there are so many awesome campgrounds in the UP that we return again and again.

    We visit in all seasons but we have to say autumn is always our favorite time. The nights are cool and crisp and the days are typically warm and the mosquitos and black flies that swarm early in the summer have pretty much disappeared.

    The trees are ablaze in color, the streams and rivers run at and clear and the majesty of the wilderness abounds.

    It truly is one of the most serenely beautiful areas of the United States!

    We love spending time up there, and we ahve done many articles, videos and photo essays about the UP over the years, and even one of or 7 Day Adventure guides.

    In this article, though, we want to share 10 of our favorite campgrounds in the UP. Well also link to many resources and articles to help you choose the perfect ones for camping in the UP. These are all convenient to popular attractions and are beautiful spots to park your RV and man have hookups for the best camping experience.


    Also Check: Camping World Of Rocklin Parts & Accessories

    Practice Using Your Equipment Before You Go

    Are you new to camping? Have a new tent or RV? Has it been a few years since you enjoyed the outdoors?

    Its awesome that youre going out into the great outdoors, but be sure to check all of your equipment before you go.

    Make sure you have all of the parts and pieces and you know how to use them so you dont get stuck trying to put up a new tent in the rain or without essential equipment.

    The Popular And Free Camping Areas In Michigan

    • Amanda Williams

    Michigan is one of the best states for camping on the east coast of the United States. With over 3,000 miles of shoreline, 11,000 lakes, and home to 4 of the 5 Great Lakes, it is no wonder Michigan is called the Great Lake State. With such an abundance of natural landscapes, there is no shortage of camping opportunities for you to truly enjoy nature.

    Most campgrounds are developed and thus would require you to book ahead and pay a fee. But what if you are on a budget, or want more flexibility?

    Dispersed camping is your answer.

    On this page, we will share with you where to find some of the best free campsite sites in Michigan.

    Read More :Guide to Dispersed Camping

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    Free Upper Peninsula Michigan Boondocking Locations

    Elevation: 774

    Management: Public State Forest

    The road in is Dirt and 1.5 miles from a paved road. Thayers Lake is open year round. There are 1-5 Free Michigan camping spots at this location. You may stay 15 nights at Thayers Lake. Shallow lake with fishing on Michigan State Forest Land. The Trout River runs from the lake. Dispersed camping, no facilities.

    Last Thoughts About Camping In The Upper Peninsula Of Michigan

    Last evening in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan during 4th camping trip ...

    Camping in the upper peninsula of Michigan is one of my familys favorite things to do and I hope you can plan a camping trip up there soon too.

    Of course, camping anywhere means being prepared with the right equipment, knowing how to have fun but being safe, and camping ethically-but camping in the U.P. adds a few extra precautions and things to consider .

    I hope this article was helpful and you have an amazing camping trip in the upper peninsula!

    Recommended Reading: Silver Lake State Park Camping

    Mclain State Park Hancock

    With miles-long trail loops and two and a half miles of Lake Superior shoreline, McLain State Park is a snowshoers dream. Providing the perfect location for a base-camp, the area is known for its plethora of historical landmarks, unique natural beauty, and gorgeous sunsets.

    Many state parks offer year-round camping and vault toilets for convenience. Always check with your favorite park for rates and availability. Winter camping is an incomparable experience in our Awesome Mittens Upper Peninsula so get out there and enjoy the winter wonderland that is Michigan!

    Be sure to also check out our guide for road-tripping the UP as well!

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