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The tiny town of Kalkaska, Michigan can be found about two hours north of Grand Rapids and Lansing. This peaceful community is located in the north of Michigan and is quite isolated from any major urban areas, making it a delightful place to visit or rent an RV. Dotted with gently rolling hills, open farmland, and flowing rivers, Kalkaska is sure to captivate visitors with its small-town feel and mesmerizing scenery.
Kalkaska was created in 1873 when sawmill owners correctly anticipated the arrival of a railway and occupied the land. For most of its existence, the town relied on sawmills and agriculture to get by, until natural gas and oil was discovered. Following a lucrative period of time where natural gas was the backbone of the economy, the town saw a brief decline before finally reinventing itself as a beautiful tourist destination and gateway to the stunning wilderness of northern Michigan.
The Iceman Cometh Bike Race brings in thousands of participants each year to race in the frigid tundra of early winter. The National Trout Festival has motorsports, carnivals, life music, and amazing food, and the town’s annual Winterfest celebrates the towns love of snow. Regardless of when you decide to book an RV in Kalkaska, you’ll have plenty of opportunities for recreation and entertainment.
Like many small rural communities, Kalkaska is flanked in all sides by fertile farmland and evergreen forests. Within the town, there are a few parks open to the public, but the best natural scenery awaits those that take their Kalkaska RV rental for a spin around the magical state of Michigan.
Directly adjacent to Kalkaska is Traverse City State Forest, named for nearby Traverse City. This sprawling state forest is full of wilderness trails and pleasant places to camp overnight with your Kalkaska camper rental. There is also a Traverse City State Park that sits across the road from the waters of Lake Michigan. Here, there are deluxe camping spots with electricity as well as a series of bicycle and hiking trails.
North and South Manitou Islands are part of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, a stunning collection of wilderness areas, undeveloped coastline, and abandoned towns. North Manitou island can be reached by boat, to see the ghost town that once was a thriving industrial sawmill community. Now the island is mostly natural with a campground on the east facing side.
Hartwick Pines State Park is another lovely place to see when you rent an RV in Kalkaska. Almost 10,000 acres of evergreen forest comprise one of Michigan's largest state parks. Hiking through this ancient old-growth forest, or skiing the cross-country trails in winter time are both fantastic ways to tour the park.
Huron-Manistee National Forest to the south, as well as Saul Ste. Marie State Forest and Hiawatha National Forest on the upper peninsula, make up some of the largest undisturbed stretches of wild in the northern United States. Named for the legendary Mohawk chieftain, Hiawatha National Forest has an assortment of tranquil campgrounds on the banks of ponds, rivers, and along the coast of both Lake Michigan and Lake Superior. If you really don’t mind the drive to the farthest edges of Michigan, Isle Royale National Park is a breathtaking island in the middle of North America’s largest freshwater lake, Lake Superior. Isle Royale is full of incredible wildlife and ancient settlements from over 4,000 years ago, making it a World Heritage site.
Considering just how tiny the rural community is, Kalkaska has an impressive presence. Lively little bars and restaurants dot the main strip in town, making Kalkaska feel like a bigger town than it is. The Cherry Street Market is a place to buy fresh produce and fruit. Additionally, there are many types of food and desserts sold at this charming market. The National Trout Memorial is the most iconic attraction in Kalkaska, a truly unique monument that cannot be seen anywhere else. This towering trout statue in the center of a large water feature is a quirky and fun testament to the local anglers.
If you feel as though you have done everything there is to do in the tiny community, bring the Kalkaska rental camper for a ride to nearby Traverse City, another charming rural town on the coast of Lake Michigan. Traverse City is just full of wineries, breweries, and vineyards. Historic Front Street is full of retail shopping and tasty eateries, with old buildings and theaters on either side of the road. The Dennos Museum Center has a one-of-a-kind collection of Inuit native art and artifacts in an effort to pay homage to the northern indigenous people.
Northern Michigan is full of places to camp your Kalkaska luxury motorhome rental. Kalkaska Log Lake Campground is just minutes from town. This lakefront campground is close to several golf courses, casinos, and nature trails.
Kalkaska RV Park & Campground has quite a few amenities. An arcade, library, convenience store, and large pool are a few of the fun things you’ll see at this campground. Farther outside of town, Rapid River Campground has loads of rustic, wooded campsites for your Kalkaska rental RV. Chain O Lakes Campground is open all year round and has cabins, tent sites, and huge parking spots for even the biggest recreational vehicles.