If you’re like us you might not of ever heard of Muskallonge Lake State Park. It’s located at the top of the Upper Peninsula in a fairly remote area which is popular with ORVers and rock hounds. But you don’t hear about it as often as the more well known state parks on the shores of Lake Michigan.
We chose this location for our trip last fall in the hopes that we would find some amazing autumn colors and because it’s fairly close to the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.
History of the Park
Muskallonge Lake State Park is located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and has a rich history dating back to the 1800s. The park is named after Muskallonge Lake, a large and scenic body of water. The park was established in 1923 and was originally used as a fishing and hunting camp.
In the early 1900s, the area around the lake was heavily logged, and many of the trees were used to build the nearby town of Grand Marais. Today, the park is known for its pristine beaches, hiking trails, and stunning views of Lake Superior.
What You Should Know About the Park
Before visiting Muskallonge Lake State Park, there are several important things to know. First, the park location is fairly remote, so it’s a good idea to have reservations in advance and a plan in place for supplies.
Newberry is about 27 miles away and is has the best prices and selection if you need to stock up. Grand Marais is only 18 miles away but it’s a much smaller town and the road is unpaved which means it isn’t as easy to access.
The park is also known for its rugged terrain, so visitors should be prepared for hiking and outdoor activities. Additionally, the lake can have strong currents and cold temperatures, so swimming should only be done in designated areas and with caution.
Visitors should also be aware of the park’s rules and regulations, such as no open fires except in designated areas and no pets allowed on the beach.
Things to Know About the Campground
The campground has 3 separate loops. Sections 1 and 2 are fairly open campsites with less privacy but a better view of Muskallonge Lake. The bathhouse which serves those sections is also newer.
Section 3 is an older section of the campground but the spaces are larger and have a lot more trees giving more shade and privacy. Also, the bathhouse has been recently remodeled so the inside is fresh and clean.
When we stayed here for a week we were in Section 3 and we were happy with our selection. Chose your site wisely because some of the sites in Section 3 still have an amazing view of the lake and some of them have the view blocked by trees.
The campground offers a variety of campsites, including rustic tent sites and modern campsites with electricity, as well as group camping options. Additionally, the campground has access to several amenities, including clean restrooms, showers, a playground for children, and lake access.
Because of it’s proximity to Lake Superior, the temperatures are likely to be a bit cooler than you might expect and there’s usually a nice breeze coming off of the lake. Be sure to bring plenty of warm clothes and blankets with you!
Would We Go Back to this Campground?
Absolutely! We really enjoyed our visit during the fall but we have heard it can be noisy sometimes during the summer because of it’s popularity with ORVers. We didn’t have any issues with noise, but that may have been because of the time of year we visited or the fact that we were in Section 3 where the sites are farther apart.
There are several attractions near Muskallonge Lake State Park that visitors can explore.
1 – Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore – This popular attraction is Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, which is a stunning area along the Lake Superior shoreline that features colorful sandstone cliffs, waterfalls, and other natural formations. You can watch us explore part of the eastern half of this lakeshore in the video below!
2 – Tahquamenon Falls State Park – This park is home to one of the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi River. Visitors can hike, fish, and explore the park’s many trails and scenic vistas.
3 – Grand Marais – This town is also nearby and offers several restaurants, shops, and cultural events throughout the year, including the annual Grand Marais Music and Arts Festival. They also have a gas station if you need to fill up!
4 – Crisp Point Lighthouse – Crisp Point Lighthouse is the most remote lighthouse located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Built in 1904, the lighthouse served as a beacon for ships traveling along the rugged Lake Superior shoreline for many decades. It is situated on a remote and picturesque stretch of shoreline that is known for its rugged beauty and excellent opportunities for outdoor recreation. Visitors can take guided tours of the lighthouse and its grounds, which include a museum and gift shop. The lighthouse is also a popular spot for photography, and visitors can enjoy stunning views of Lake Superior from its observation deck. Be aware that the route to get to the lighthouse is unpaved and can sometimes be impassable so plan your visit during a try time if you don’t have 4-wheel drive. Some people love driving their ORVs out to the lighthouse.
5 – Lake Superior – Take a drive along the Lake Superior shoreline to enjoy stunning views, enjoy remote beaches without a lot of other people, and even do some rock hounding.
6 – North Country Trail – This trail follows the shore of Lake Superior and is a pristine part of the trail. Do your research, though, because some parts of the trail follow the unpaved county roads in this area.
How Do I Get There?
For More Information
You can find out more information or make your reservations on the Michigan State Park & Harbor Reservations website or you can follow the Michigan Department of Natural Resources on Facebook or Instagram.
Address and Contact Info:
29881 Co Rd 407, Newberry, MI 49868
Office Phone: (906) 658-3338