(Last Updated On: July 29, 2022)

campsite overlooking the water at a state park near escanaba michigan

For those who live in or around Escanaba in Michigan, the state gives them plenty of options when it comes to exploring the great outdoors.

Covering some 306,000 acres, across 101 state parks, it subsumes a scintillating landscape of verdant forests, imperious mountain peaks, raging rivers, shimmering lakes and gaping caves.

Receiving over 26 million visitors annually, many of whom choose to hike, or bike, the 900 miles of trails that run through them, these destinations also provide excellent opportunities for fishing, swimming, boating and photography.

In addition, with over 14,100 campsites available in some 142 campgrounds, they also have plenty of places to stay overnight too.

Now that Covid restrictions have been lifted if you are in mind to partake in any of these activities there are a number of places you can visit.

Outlined below is a selection of 5 state parks near the city of Escanaba we highly recommend you check out.

Map of State Parks Near Escanaba, MI

Here is a map of the state parks in Michigan covered by this post:

List of State Parks Near Escanaba

The five state parks near Escanaba are located all over the state of Michigan. Some of them are close enough to the city to be be visited on a day trip, while all of them offer various camping and overnight accommodation options.

1. Bewabic State Park

Location: 720 Idlewild Rd, Crystal Falls, MI 49920

Located an hour and 25 minutes northwest of Escanaba, the Bewabic State Park is a spectacular public recreational area.

Covering some 315 acres along the shoreline of Fortune Lake, the park is known for its scenic hardwood forest and the gorgeous Fortune Lake. Both of which provide lots of scope for hiking, biking, swimming, boating and fishing.

In addition, it also possesses a number historic buildings that were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps around the 1930s that are well worth checking out too.

Situated just a couple of miles from the wonderful Crystal Falls, and not too far from the state border of Wisconsin, this state park has a very remote feel to it.

Its campground accommodates 129-sites, most of which are shaded and come with electricity, a fire ring and picnic table.
The park also has an excellent beach, as well as two playgrounds, tennis courts, a boat launch and a number of different picnicking facilities.

2. Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park

tree branches hanging over water at a state park near escanaba michigan

Location: 33303 Headquarters Rd, Ontonagon, MI 49953

Incorporating over 60,000 acres within the western Upper Peninsula, the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park is the largest of all state parks in Michigan. Infact it is so big, it spans two time zones!

Residing a 3 hour drive northwest of Escanaba, the park is one of the few large size wilderness areas in the Midwest that still remains.

Boasting a landscape that includes miles of picturesque streams and rivers, over 90 miles of scenic hiking trails, a number of cascading waterfalls and over 35,000-acres of stunning old-growth forest, Porcupine is the perfect place to reconnect with nature.

As well as hiking, popular activities here in the summer include fishing and hiking, whilst in the winter snowmobiling and downhill skiing are the go.

The park also features the magnificent Lake of the Clouds, which is a high-elevation lake that is not only very photogenic, but also a wonderful spot for a picnic too. Other notable points of interest include the Summit Peak observation tower which showcases impressive views, the terrific Porcupine Mountains Ski Area and an 18-hole disc golf course.

Accommodation at the park is situated within two large, modern campgrounds that between them offer some 150 sites, as well as cabins and yurts. It also has a range of amenities including a shower house, laundry room and toilets.

3. McLain State Park

Location: 18350 M-203, Hancock, MI 49930

The McLain State Park is a 443-acre recreational area that lies about a 3 hour and 10 minute drive northwest of Escanaba.
Situated around Lake Superior, the modern campground here serves as a great base to enjoy water based activities like swimming, fishing, canoeing, kayaking and paddle boarding.

When you are not engaging in any of these activities, the park also offers tremendous scenery like stunning ice formations, which attract snowshoers and cross country skiers, as well as two miles of pristine beach to enjoy.

With 103 sites and 6 mini cabins there are plenty of places to stay overnight. If you wake up early you will get to see some truly remarkable sunsets at them too.

4. Lake Gogebic State Park

Location: N9995 State Highway M64, Marenisco, MI 49947

Featuring the largest inland lake in the Upper Peninsula, Lake Gogebic State Park is a spectacular scenic wooded park that accommodates a mile long lake front.

Situated a 2 hour and 45 minute drive northwest from Escanaba, it provides terrific opportunities for swimming, fishing and boating.

Overall the park has 127 campsites, most of which lie within easy walking distance of the lake, which itself is just 30 miles to the south of Lake Superior. As well as being close to the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park too.

There is a lovely beach here too which is nice place to sunbathe and relax, as well as lots of interesting hiking spots to explore through the forested areas.

5. Fort Wilkins Historic State Park

Location: 15223 US Hwy 41, Copper Harbor, MI 49918

At 4 hours north of Escanaba, the Fort Wilkins Historic State Park is the furthest destination on this list. But it is also one of the most historic and significant too.

Operated by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the park presents the meticulously restored 1844 army military outpost of Fort Wilkins. A site that was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1970.

Nestled on the northern Keweenaw Peninsula, its a wonderful place to immerse yourself in the antiquity of the area, as well as partaking in activities like hiking, picnicking and photography.

For those who really want to explore the area, the park features a number of campsites with 50 amp service and a wide range of facilities and amenities.