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Interlochen State Park

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General Information

Interlochen State Park is situated between two lakes amid virgin white pines.
Copyright: - Michigan State Parks & Forests
Interlochen State Park is situated between two lakes amid virgin white pines.
Description - The park was established as Michigan's first state park by the State Legislature in 1917, which paid $60,000 for the land. The name of the park was originally "Pine Park;" a 200-acre public park which was created to preserve the virgin white pine stand for the people of Michigan. In 1928, the National Music Camp was established on the property adjoining the northern boundary of the park.

The Interlochen Center for the Arts is adjacent to the park. Renowned musicians perform concerts year round. Schedules can be obtained online or by phoning (231) 276-7200, or (231) 276-9221.

Two nearby canoe liveries rent canoes. Riverside Canoe Livery on the Platte River can be contacted by calling (231) 325-5622 and Alvina's Canoe Rental on the Betsie River can be reached at (231) 276-9514.

Also popular at Interlochen State Park is the Three Discipline Triathlon Event hosted each July.

Attractions - Interlochen State Park is situated between Duck and Green Lakes. Water related sports include boating, sailboating, canoeing, swimming, power boating, and fishing. The park maintains three boat launches, one on each loop of the modern campground and a third at the rustic campground off of Green Lake. Rowboats can be rented at the park store for those visitors who would like to take a relaxing journey onto one of Interlochen's lakes. Anglers can look forward to catching their share of bass, pike, and bluegill. Green Lake supports populations of smelt and northern pike.

Interlochen State Park has 490 campsites. The campground along Duck Lake offers 428 modern sites on two loops on each side of the day use area. The remaining sites are located at the rustic campground on Green Lake. Two mini-cabins, one located in the north camp and the other in the south camp, come equipped with two bunk beds, a table with four chairs, a standup closet, and a three-drawer dresser. Outside the cabins there is a fire ring and a picnic table. Camping facilities are open April 15 to November 1.

There is also an interpretive display of the l890s logging era which can be found next to the set of logging wheels in the organizational campground at the center of the park.

The day use area of Interlochen State Park has a large picnic area, children's playground, park store, volleyball court, video arcade, a beach and swimming area.

The Pines Nature Trail is a self-guided interpretive foot trail adjacent to the rustic campground and the south campground. The trail is highlighted with 16 interpretive stops that correspond with a brochure available to visitors at the park headquarters.

The most popular winter activities in Interlochen State Park are cross-country skiing and smelt fishing. There is quite a bit of cross-country skiing, which occurs on the park's interior roadways each winter. The trails are not groomed, but are clearly visible.

The National Music Camp is adjacent to the park. Renowned musicians perform concerts from June through August. Schedules can be obtained by phoning 231-276-6230 or 231-276-9221.
There are two canoe liveries that rent canoes. Riverside Canoe Livery on the Platte River can be contacted by calling 616-325-5622 and Alvina's Canoe Rental on the Betsie River can be reached at 616-276-9514.

Recreation - Interlochen State Park offers the visitor a range of recreations: swimming, hiking, boating, fishing, picnicking, playground fun, cabin lodging, camping, volleyball court, video arcade, summer concert series and winter cross-country skiing.

Interlochen Green Lake-Rustic - (800) 447-2757, 52 site(s), $10
Interlochen Duck Lake -Modern - (800) 447-2757, 428 site(s), $21/$19
Interlochen-Group Use Area - (231) 276-9511, Contact the park

Interlochen-Pines Nature Trail - 1 (Miles), Hiking, Cross Country Ski

Climate - Northern Michigan normally experiences mild summers with average temperatures around 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). Winter temperatures average 14 - 22 degrees F (-10 to -6 degrees C). Yearly rain and snowmelt in the region averages 28 - 36 inches but can be dramatically altered by the "lake effect," thus depositing significant amounts of snow within a short period of time causing hazardous road conditions.

Location - Interlochen State Park is located on a slender slice of land between Duck Lake and Green Lake, southwest of Traverse City on M-137.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
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Filed By: Amanda (Flint, MI)
Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Neutral
Report: This is a very large state park. I was very unimpressed with the restrooms, they were filthy the whole time, I'm not sure they were cleaned well at all seeing as how I saw the exact same piece of toilet paper on the floor for two days. After the third day it was finally gone...kinda gross. Also the restrooms we were using had the showers in the bathrooms. There were two showers at the end, they did not even have full doors anyone could peek through and see you taking your shower. The other restrooms had the showers on the outside with the full private door. As far as the lake goes, it's a long walk to the beach, especially with little kids and all the stuff you need to take with you. The water is beautiful, nice and clear and shallow, but....it is full of rocks, I would advise swimming shoes, as all of us had a hard time walking out, even in the deeper water it's still very rocky. The fishing was very good though. The music camp is across the road, and you can hear the kids playing, so keep in mind it can be a bit loud, it seems like we mostly heard them on the water. If it weren't for the bathrooms and rocky swim area I'd go back, but right now I'm not sure if I would.

Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Neutral
Report: I have been coming here for over 15 years but I am losing my faith in this park. The bath rooms are so poorly maintained! I was tempted to bring my own bleach and wash the floor myself! On our last night there a 100ft+ white oak tree (3ft dia) fell during the night.. we were all very lucky that no one was injured. It fell 3 sites from us but the camp ground was at best 25% full. The DNR rep there said that the tree was known to be an issue and was one their list for over a month to bring down. Well, nice of you to make this a priority! I still like this camp ground but someone needs a good kick in the rear to improve the park froma stand point of cleanliness and safety. Lots of trees with large broken branches just hanging 15 to 20ft ..these need to be bought down. Take a lesson from Harrisville St.Park and make these basic improvements.

Filed By: JP (Comstock Park, Mi)
Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: I just spent 10 days at Interlochen SP. Their were 24 in our group. Temperature was from 85 to 104 degrees! We spent an incredible amount of time in the water & not one of us got Swimmer's Itch. I was very cautious about it, wearing Bug N Sun & wiping off after swimming. The teenage boys were not so careful & did not get it either, So, go & enjoy the Park & dont worry about "the Itch".

Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: this is a wonderful place to visit. not only is it beautiful but so relaxing. yes it is true that you can get 'swimmers itch', but as long as you use some sort of tanning oil or sunblock you won't have a problem. the bathrooms and showers are the best i have seen in a state park. i can't wait to visit again!!

Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: A very important note: the availablity of swimming at this park is to be taken with a grain of salt. While some people do swim in the lakes, the likelihood of getting "swimmer's itch" makes it a fairly uninviting activity. The parasite that causes these itchy welts has been present in the lakes for some 40 years. There is a water park within a couple of miles, however, if swimming is a necessity. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the rustic campground at and intend to return this year. Beyond the beautiful scenery, the high point for us was our evenings spent at either free or reasonably priced concerts at the Arts Camp.

More Information

Contact Information:
Interlochen State Park, M-137 , Interlochen, MI, 49643, Phone: 231-276-9511, TTY: 517-335-4623

Additional Information:
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.
Northern Michigan - Flat agricultural and industrial lands of southern Michigan evolve into scenic rolling glacial hillsides covered with hardwoods and conifers and bisected by some of the state's largest waterways including the famed Au Sable and Thunder Bay rivers.

Michigan Department of Natural Resources - Official agency website.


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