Description - Higgins Lake State Park was originally a state forest campground, established in the mid-1920s. The State Parks Division took over the area in 1963 and established North Higgins as a state park. The 429-acre park currently occupies land that was formerly the Higgins Lake Nursery.
Copyright: Michigan State Parks & Forests
North Higgins State Park occupies land that was formerly the Higgins Lake Nursery.
- North Higgins Lake State Park offers a variety of recreations for the day and overnight guest. It has a large camping expanse with 195 sites separated into two unique areas. The East Campground is more open, the sites are grassy, and it is located next to the Ralph A. McMullan Conference Center. The West Campground is set in a mixture of mature hardwoods and pines, and is located close to the boat launch. Both campgrounds have modern bathhouses with nearby sanitation station. The camping facilities are open April 15 to December 1.
Two mini-cabins are located in the West Campground. Both cabins have two sets of bunk beds, a table with two benches, electricity, and electric heat. A picnic table, fire ring, and grill are also provided outside the cabin.
The park has over eight miles of marked multiple-use trails. The trails wind through the mixed hardwoods that make up the mature wooded area. They cross over moderate hills and flatlands. Motorized vehicles are not permitted, however, all kinds of bikes are allowed. These trails are groomed for cross-country skiing in the winter.
North Higgins State Park is a wonderful destination for summer swimmers. The shallow lakefront provides the perfect environment for families with young children. The beachfront is located directly south of the campgrounds. It has ample shade down to the water's edge and a fine sandy beach for sunbathers, playground equipment, a picnic shelter, a park store, and a sand volleyball court. The lake has handicapped accessibility.
Located across North Higgins Lake Drive (County Road 203) is the Interpretive Area and multi-use trail system. The area offers a glimpse of Michigan's history, featuring a Civilian Conservation Corps museum and a self-guided nature trail through a state forest nursery area dating back to 1903. The museum is housed in replica 1933 barracks depicting the lifestyle of depression-era reconstruction efforts in our nation. Tours of the first reforestation project in Michigan, which started at the Higgins Lake Nursery in 1903, are scheduled throughout the summer and by special request.
A cement boat launch is available in the park. Higgins Lake is 9,600 acres and contains a variety of fish species including trout, northern pike, rock bass, yellow perch, and smelt. Ice fishing is pursued in winter.
Hunting is not allowed within the park boundaries, however, there is ample hunting on state land across the road.
Nearby attractions include golf, canoe rentals, go-karts, arcade rooms, batting cages, miniature golf, and shopping.
Recreation - Outdoor enthusiasts will find camping, cabin lodging, swimming, hunting, fishing, hiking, boating, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, ice fishing, and viewing historic sights and exhibits.
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.
The park is located 8.5 miles west of Roscommon. From Interstate 75, take exit 244 and go left six miles. Or from US 27, take the Military Road exit and follow signs to the park.