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Craig Lake State Park




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General Information

Craig Lake State Park is a wilderness park supporting large game.
Copyright: - Michigan State Parks & Forests
Craig Lake State Park is a wilderness park supporting large game.
Description - Craig Lake State Park and thousands of surrounding acres were originally purchased by Fred Miller of the Miller Brewing family in the early 1950s. He named the lakes after his two sons (Craig and Teddy) and daughter (Claire). Miller built two cabins, a three-bedroom lodge, and a six-bunk cabin for his caretaker Thomas. Miller and one of his sons died in a plane crash in 1954 and the property was sold to a logging company in Marquette. The State of Michigan acquired the land in 1966.

This wilderness park contains six full lakes and numerous small ponds along with a variety of wildlife such as deer, black bear, beaver, loons, and a portion of the Upper Peninsula moose herd. Craig Lake is 374 acres and features six islands and high granite bluffs along its northern shoreline.

Attractions - Craig Lake is a wilderness area and access into the park is somewhat of an adventure. Vehicles with high ground clearance are recommended due to the rocky conditions of the road.

The park is totally undeveloped except for its trail network and two cabins. Craig Lake State Park offers some of the most rugged trails in Michigan. There is an eight-mile trail that loops around Craig Lake and offers some great opportunities to view wildlife, fauna, and the lakeshore. Most of the trails are wide tracks as they were former logging roads.

The two Miller cabins are excellent for small and large group getaways. The Miller cabins are located in the middle of the woods, about a two-mile hike from the parking area. The cabins have no electricity, a hand pump for water, and a pit toilet. There is also a grill for cooking and a fire ring. The park provides firewood for heat. The smaller cabin will sleep six and the larger cabin sleeps 14. The cabins are open to the public, weather permitting, from May 15th to October 15th.

Snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing are all popular activities in the park. Craig Lake usually has nine months of snow conditions and is never at a loss for winter activities.

Camping at Craig Lake is for backpackers only. There is a self-registration drop pipe at the entrance to the trail system. There are no designated campsites, but camping is allowed throughout the park, with exception to the immediate cabin area.

The park permits hunting for all species following regular State Regulations between September 15 and March 31. The terrain is mixed hardwoods and swamp offering ideal habitat for deer, bear squirrel, rabbit and grouse. The park is also open to trapping providing excellent muskrat, beaver and mink populations.

Recreation - Located in the heart of moose country, Craig Lake State Park is ideal for backcountry camping, canoeing, fishing, hunting, hiking, wildlife viewing and winter sports.

Climate - The Upper Peninsula normally experiences mild summers with average temperatures near 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). Winter temperatures average 14 degrees F (-10 degrees C). Rain and snowmelt in the region can reach up to 200 inches annually. Travelers should be aware that significant amounts of snow could fall within a relatively short period of time resulting in hazardous road conditions.

Location - Located in the Upper Peninsula, take US-41 / M-28 six miles west of Champion, Michigan and turn north onto Keewaydin Lake Road. Go 12 miles, taking the left fork after five miles. (There is an unmarked network of logging roads that leads to the parking areas of Keewaydin, Craig, and Teddy Lakes.)


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: David Selleck (Muskegon, MI)
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: We stayed in the small cabin. It handled six guys very nicely. The fishing was good. We caught walleye, large and small mouth and crappie. We caught a couple pike, one very large one, and saw a couple large muskie. We had good weather and visited most of the lakes.

Filed By: Derek
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: great place to go if you like the extreme outdoors. If you are staying at the cabins i would suggest canoeing to them rather than hiking in. the fishing was so so in craig with a few pike and smallmouth bass caught, just remember that there our special regulations on the lakes. One thing that is a must in CLSP is a camera for the many breath taking views.


More Information

Contact Information:
Craig Lake State Park, P.O. Box 88 , Champion, MI, 49814-0088, Phone: 906-339-4461, TTY: 517-335-4623

Additional Information:
Michigan Lakes and Rivers - Michigan is one of the most unique states in the nation boasting not only thousands of acres of interior natural lakes along with miles of waterways but also expansive shorelines that touch four of the five Great Lakes: Superior, Michigan, Huron, and Erie.
Michigan State Parks and Forests - Everything that makes Michigan special is embodied in the 96 State Parks. Boasting sterling recreation, Michigan State Parks and Forests invite you to enjoy one of their 14,000 campsites, 170 winter-sport areas and infinite rivers, streams, and lakes.
Upper Peninsula - This region encompasses nearly the entire Upper Peninsula landmass embracing windswept mountain tops, tumbling waterfalls, pristine woodlands, scenic lakeshores, and welcoming communities.

Links:
Michigan Department of Natural Resources - Official agency website.

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