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Straits State Park



Father Marquette National Memorial- The memorial pays tribute to the life and work of Father Jacques Marquette, French priest and explorer.

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General Information

Home of Father Marquette National Memorial, Straits State Park offers scenic views of Mackinac Bridge.
Copyright: Michigan State Parks & Forests
Home of Father Marquette National Memorial, Straits State Park offers scenic views of Mackinac Bridge.
Description - Straits State Park was established in 1924. In the 1950s, land was acquired for the west campground, North 1 and North 2 campgrounds, and a new headquarters area. In 1974, land was dedicated for the Father Marquette Unit and construction was started. In the spring of 1980, the Father Marquette National Memorial and Museum was dedicated and opened. Today, the park boasts 334 acres and year-round access including to those individuals who enjoy winter camping and cross-country skiing.

Attractions - Straits State Park is one of Michigan's most popular state parks. Located across from Mackinac Island, the park offers spectacular views from many vantage points including an observation deck and individual campsites.

The park has a year-round, 275-site campground with modern bathhouses serving the public May 1 through October 15. Over a dozen sites are located lakeside. Campers have a choice of sun or shade destination. Centrally located bathhouses are equipped with hot showers, flush toilets and two sanitation stations. Convenient to the campground is an overlook platform for viewing the Mackinac Bridge and Straits of Mackinac. Also conveniently located is the children's playground. The park offers two mini-cabins, each sleeping four on bunk beds. Cabins are equipped with electricity.

Straits State Park is one of the few state parks that offers winter camping with plowed sites that include electricity, with water available at the headquarters. The price of camping is reduced in the off-season according to the facilities furnished. Camping is allowed at the headquarters parking lot.

Cross-country skiers are invited to use the unplowed campground roads and picnic area.

A hiking trail runs through the park with the terminus ending at the observation platform. The other end of the trail offers a different perspective of the Mackinac Bridge.

Boaters should note that a boat launch is located downtown St. Ignace, half a mile away. Fishing is allowed on the shore of Lake Huron, with the best fishing located west of the Mackinac Bridge. The water is too shallow in front of the park for good shore fishing.

Area attractions include Mackinac Island (four miles across Lake Huron), three ferry service lines, gift shops, restaurants, and a casino in St. Ignace. St. Ignace is a quaint city teeming with small town atmosphere. Many campers leave their trailers at the park and make day trips up to Tahquamenon Falls (80 miles) and to the Soo Locks (50 miles). St. Ignace is known for its antique auto show on the last weekend in June and the Labor Day Bridge Walk held every Labor Day on the Mackinac Bridge.

Recreation - Recreations available to the Straits State Park visitor include touring historical exhibits, viewing fabulous natural and man-made scenery, picnicking, year-round camping, cabin lodging, and cross-country skiing. Boating and fishing opportunities are half a mile away.

Climate - The Straits normally experiences mild summers with average temperatures around 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). Winter temperatures average 14 - 18 degrees F (-10 to -8 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 - To reach Straits State Park travel Interstate 75 to US-2. Exit at Church Street and head south for a quarter mile.


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Filed By: mellie mel
Number of People Encountered: 25-50 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Comments refer to 8/2003 visit: It's a popular park so not a good place to get away from the crowds. Nice views of the Mackinac bridge and a nice lake front (no swimming beach). No dogs allowed on the waterfront even though it's not for swimming -- bummer. The other thing I didn't care for was that you could hear traffic noises in the distance from the bridge so you lose some of the wilderness feel. (But you can just turn up your tv and forget about it. :)


More Information

Contact Information:
Straits State Park, 720 Church Street , St. Ignace, MI, 49781-1729, Phone: 906-643-8620, TTY: 517-335-4623

Additional Information:
Father Marquette National Memorial - The memorial pays tribute to the life and work of Father Jacques Marquette, French priest and explorer.
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.
Straits - The Straits Travel Region serves as the gateway to the sequestered Upper Peninsula and to Canada while boasting its own natural wonders.

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

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