Located on the Keweenaw Peninsula in Houghton County, Michigan, McLain State Park covers an area of 443-acres that contains rugged terrains, woodlands, rolling hills, and a sandy beach. A large part of the park lies on the coast of Lake Superior, and the majority of the shoreline there is rocky. However, a sandy beach on the border of the Keweenaw Waterway, at a spot called Breakwaters is famous for swimming and recreational water-based activities. Moreover, there are also other swimming areas near campsites and many hiking trails that wander off into the woods.
Lying between the towns of Houghton/Hancock and Calumet, approximately at a 10 miles distance, McLain State Park is a famous point for road bikers and mountain bikers. The park has numerous trails through and adjacent to the park. McLain State Park has around 80 campsites scattered on or near the water’s edge providing basic amenities. The park offers guests the option to reserve pastoral cabins for parties of up to four people. There are also a number of playgrounds throughout the park for children.
The park is open all year round and offers both summer and winter wonders. The lovely ice formations beside the coastline mesmerize and fascinate snowshoers and cross-country skiers. The summers allow people to enjoy the flora and fauna rich woods or relax by the beach soaking in the sun and the views. McLain State Park is well-renowned for its breathtaking views of the sun setting behind the lighthouse by the beach offering truly picturesque views that make it a must visit for your next RV adventure.
RV Rentals in McLain State Park
Transportation in McLain State Park
Located midway between Hancock and Calumet on State Highway M-203 lies McLain State Park. The main roads inside the park are well paved and well kept, and the drive to the park itself is quite lovely with scenic back drops all along the way. Inside the park roads leading to campsites can be grassy while some campsite also offer asphalt pads. A secondary local road that runs through the park offer stunning views of the lake and the beach. The roads in the campground are one-way and get quite narrow in some areas with only room for one car or RV to pass through at a time. The pedestrian entrance is free and there is also a free parking area just outside the park.
Campgrounds and parking in McLain State Park
Campsites in McLain State Park
McLain State Park Campgrounds
McLain State Park offers guests 98 campground sites to choose from along with the option of seven cabins in case you don't feel like RV camping or tenting. All sites are pet-friendly and are close to park facilities. There are double pit toilets located between sites 38 -39 at the outside row, and between sites 47-48 on the inner row, along with two more located at the entry point of the road that is leading towards the cabins. The park also features picnic shelters that require reservation before arrival. Advanced camping reservations can be made for up to six months ahead of time of the visitors’ scheduled arrival date. You can stay at the campgrounds for up to 15 consecutive nights at a time. Campgrounds should be inhabited each night and visitors are encouraged never to leave the fire pit neglected. There are two vehicles allowed per campground site with generator use not permitted between 10 pm and 8 am.
Seasonal activities in McLain State Park
There are two miles of coastline at Lake Superior in McLain State Park that offers a sandy beach and designated swimming area for guests to enjoy the cool and placid lake water. Swimming is also possible at the campgrounds along which the lake flows and one is also allowed to swim close to the Portage River. Swimmers can enjoy the gorgeous scenery surrounding them while floating or swimming in the lake for. Benches situated at the beach are perfect spots to relax after a swim and take in the views of the most amazing sunsets you can imagine.
McLain State Park has numerous hiking trails that start by the lake and wind there way up the woodlands. Bear Lake Trail is open for hiking all summer and has lovely views of Bear Lake cocooned among the woods and rolling hills. The trail is generally level and smooth which makes it an easy hike even for inexperience hikers to walk, jog or run. The trail is just four miles and it loops back to the lake. The elevation of the Bear Lake Trail starts from 520 ft and it reaches its height at 650 ft.
Lake Superior is home to some 80 different species off fish and anglers visiting McLain State Park can take advantage of that by tossing a line in to catch game fish for boasting rights. The lake is teaming with native species like sturgeon, trout, northern pike, small mouth bass and yellow perch to name but a few. The scenic backdrop and views of the lighthouse while fishing is accentuated during sunsets creating a surreal and magical moment that is bound to stay in memory forever.
Every campsite at McLain State Park's campgrounds has its own picnic table and fire grill/pit. There are also horseshoe pits constructed at some of the more scenic picnic spots. The park has three picnic shelters to offer protection from weather in off-season months. Large grills for cooking are obtainable at all three of these picnic shelters whereas only two of them have fireplaces. There are two playgrounds near the picnic shelters as well for children to enjoy themselves. Moreover, each picnic site has enough distance between them to offer privacy and a sense of being alone with nature. The picnic sites are pet-friendly so you can bring along your faithful companions to enjoy the great outdoors.
Cross Country Skiing
Cross country skiing is a very prominent activity at McLain State Park during the peak winter months. Outdoor winter skiing enthusiast can take advantage of the four miles of cross country skiing trails that run through the park. The trails are all marked and easy to navigate making them ideal for novice skiers as well. The 2k East Loop and the 4k West Loop are two winter trails that run through the park and allow cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling through the leafless and snow covered woodlands.
There are also various campgrounds at the McLain State Park with bathroom and showers. The campgrounds are pretty booked during summers and offer breathtaking view of the sunset over Lake Superior. There are around 80 campsites in the park that are either on or near the edge of the water. There are also a few rustic and small cabins available for a maximum of 4 people per cabin that contain a kitchenette and other basic amenities. The park also has a single bathhouse for campers that is quite big and kept spotless and clean by the friendly park staff.