In Mid-September my Husband and I took a few days off of work and backpacked the trails at Ludington State park. This was our first time doing a day-hike only trip. We decided to back heavy since most of our gear would stay at the camp site and each day we would complete day-hikes with limited gear.
We stayed at the Jack Pine Hike-in Camp Ground. This campground was about a mile hike from the car and so close to Lake Michigan you could hear the waves crashing on the shore from your tent. It was an absolutely beautiful campsite. The place was empty the first night and we had the beach all to our self.
I would not say that we ‘roughed’ it. The campground had a bathroom and water pump. The part that made it ‘rough’ was on the second night when it rained from 7pm-7am and most of our stuff got wet. The campsite was very sandy and it got everywhere!
On the first full day, we hiked back to the main park and rented a canoe and completed the canoe trail. The trail was through swampy marshes and wetlands. There were multiple spots where we had to portage our canoe.
We spotted plenty of wildlife during our time at Ludington State Park. At one point we observed 7 wild turkey, 3 deer and a few gray squirrels handing out – like it was a family reunion at Snow White’s house.
We hiked a few small trails in the afternoon, including the trail to the Big Sable Point Light House. We got there just as the sun was setting and a storm was moving in.
The next day we hiked over 12 miles of trails and 70 flights of stairs along the Ridge Trail. We were in State hunting territory on opening weekend for small game so we had to pay close attention and keep and eye on our small raccoon-like dog.
The park is dog friendly but pets had to be leashed; we tried out best to follow those guidelines.
Overall it was a amazing trip and I would visit again. I love exploring Michigan! Our state has so much beauty.