Camping Recap : Craig Lake State Park

Craig Lake State Park is located in Champion Township, Baraga County, MI. It is Michigan’s most remote state park featuring six islands on the 374 acre lake with granite bluffs and is over 8400 acres in total.

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We are lucky enough to live within a 2 hour drive of this rustic campground. Katie and her family have been here many times but this was the first trip I was able to tag along. Graduation season cut into this trip but since it was so close it was easy to shoot up on Sunday of Memorial Day weekend.

The road in was very easy to locate using Google Maps. Signs warn of treacherous roads but they were in good condition even with the tremendous amount of rain we’ve gotten and the extremely high water table. A small crossover like a Ford Escape or a Rav4 would be more than enough to get in if the roads stay in this condition. The road is easily navigable but expect about a 20+ minute drive to get into the campground parking lot off of M28. Twists, bends, oncoming traffic, ruts and the occasional dirtbike poppin a wheelie force you to take it easy on your way in. I don’t think the speedometer made it over 20mph the entire drive in.

Katie and I joined our group as they were on Day 3 of their adventure. They had camped on the north shore of the Lake at campsite 2, but since they were departing early Sunday morning we were able to catch them at campsite 11. We basically car camped as we had planned on kayaking in to meet them at 2 but they changed their plans to get a jump start on their 10+ hour drive back to Indiana.

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Some views from the North Shore.

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The following is a photo series I call : Why Joe should never be put in charge of canoeing.

The Approach

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The Collision

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The Conclusion

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With the help of a paddle a canoe and a branch I once again swept my wife off her feet.

Second Attempt:

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The highlight of the canoeing was the bald eagle’s nest we spotted. It was massive, about 6′ in diameter. Unfortunately we have no photos as I am always on the verge of capsizing any canoe I occupy. Did I mention I hate canoes?

Here’s some views of camp site 11.

I really wish that we had had more time to camp this weekend but life milestones and a rainy Memorial Day sent us home early with a quick pit stop at the Corner Cafe.

Other highlights of the trip included :

  • Carl losing his truck keys in his pants pocket
  • Joe forgetting his quilt for his hammock and borrowing Larry’s wolfie fleece blanket
  • Carl losing his hearing aids in the bag in his hands
  • Joe convincing Katie to only pack a light blanket even though it got down to 36 degrees
  • Something bumping into Katie in the night and knocking her underquilt off so so she froze all night and couldn’t sleep
  • Carl in his mid 60s discovering vodka and cranberry juice as a drink combination

Other amenities to the campground :

  • Connects to the Baraga State and Michigamme State Forest. You have access to over 15 thousand acres of public land.
  • Located along the North Country Trail
  • Near Van Riper State Park
  • has BEAUTIFUL ADA accessible cabins
  • A feeling of complete seclusion with an easy hike in.
  • Tree branches which work well to dispatch wives