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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Muskegon, Michigan / Muskegon State Park Channel Campground

October 2014, Weekend, 2-nights, Lot 109


Arrival/check-in

There was not anyone working at the entrance shack when we arrived Friday afternoon. We had made an advance reservation, so we confirmed our lot and name information on the board for arriving campers and then proceeded to our site. Park rangers drove through the park after our arrival to check on campers and sites. Someone had setup on lot 110 across from us, and they stopped to collect payment. The campers were not on the lot at the time, so they left a payment envelope. The rangers did not provide any information for the campers though, because they asked us what the cost is per night when they returned. 

Lot 109, second loop

view from tar pad
Lot 109 has a tar pad, 20/30/50 amp service, and it is listed as able to accommodate an RV up to 45'. The information for this site says, "low limbs overhanging site." We did not encounter any low limbs on the site, although it did take a bit of finesse to back the RV in, as the limbs on the road in front of the site are low hanging, and this lot is located on a curve in the road. Our 5th wheel is 30', and it is taller than some RVs. I am not sure I would want to maneuver a 45' RV into this site.


The site description also says, "partial shade," and we thought the lot was mostly shady. This may be different in the summer when the sun is brighter and higher in the sky. The pictures of the site on the Michigan DNR reservation site are pretty accurate.

The tar pad on this lot is level. The ground slopes down from the tar pad to the dirt, and the ground cover is mostly sand. It looked like they are trying to grow grass on this site, as we observed a bit of fresh grass just starting to grow.  The sand and unlevel factor can be managed with blocks and a patio mat (ours not shown in photo). There is a view of Muskegon Lake from this lot, and the lot is secluded.

We have camped in this park a few times in the spring and fall, and this is the first time we stayed on this lot. We liked it so well, we reserved it again for next April. It is not a great lot if you want to camp with others, since it is kind of private and not next to another lot. We are hopeful there will be more grass on the lot next spring.

Facilities

It is a short walk to the restrooms and showers. Both were open during our stay, although we did not use the showers. As much as I like the camping atmosphere in this park, I do not think the facilities are very nice, and I have never used any of the showers.

There is a sanitation station with a couple of lanes to pull through to empty your tank. This is easily accessible when leaving the park. We did not need to wait to empty our tank, although there was another camper using one of the lanes when we arrived. The campground was mostly empty during our stay.





Hiking trails

There are several miles of hiking trails in this park, and the views of Lake Michigan and Muskegon Lake from the trails are fabulous. The trails are hilly and not too difficult. A link to the trail map can be found here.


We hiked from our lot along Muskegon Lake to Devil's Kitchen and then through the center on our way back. 





Some areas of the trail were not marked very well, and a few of signs were in or near the water's edge when we walked along Muskegon Lake. The lake level was higher than it has been in many years, and it looked like there were a couple of different trails along the water, as though different paths had been made as the water rose. Even though the trail was not well marked when we arrived near Devil's Kitchen area, we were able to figure out where we were using a paper map we had picked up at the ranger station.

It was drizzly and cool out, and we had plans to go bicycling in the afternoon, so we only went for a morning hike rather than a day hike. There are some nice bike trails in the Muskegon area, and we biked 15 miles along Muskegon Lake that afternoon. 

If we have good weather next spring, we plan to stay on this lot for three nights, so we can hike for the entire day (to the northern Lake Michigan campground and back), and bicycle the other day.

I took so many photos during our walk that I had a difficult time choosing only a few to post. I am sharing several photos. Remember that you can enlarge any photo in this blog by clicking on it ~ Enjoy!
Lake Michigan

Muskegon Lake