Search This Blog

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Grayling, Michigan / Hartwick Pines State Park

October 2016, Weekday-weekend, 3-nights, Hartwick Pines campsite 71


This was our third stay at Hartwick Pines State Park. This is a brief post to share new information we have learned about individual campsites within the park, and making changes to reservations. You can find more park and area detail in the following blog posts: May 2016, Bicycle Trail October 2015, Hartwick Pines October 2015, and in the Grayling Facebook album.

Making changes to advance reservations at a Michigan State Park

We had made an advance reservation for two nights, and decided we wanted to arrive a day early. Our campsite was available, and I hoped to make the change before our arrival, as the campground was quite full, and we would not be arriving until evening.

Colors in the park were just starting to change in early October

The state of Michigan website says there is a $10 fee to change a reservation. I knew from previous experience that a park ranger can make changes in the park without charging a fee, so I called the park. Unfortunately, the person who answered the call told me she could only do this after we arrived. I then decided to place a call to the State of Michigan reservation line, and hoped for the best. The person who took that call made the change for us, and we were not charged a change fee. Our reservation had already been updated when we arrived at the park, so check-in did not take long.

Hartwick Pines Campsites 71 and 77

We were on campsite 71. This a grassy and spacious site. It is private on the backside with many trees. There is one tree between this site and site 72. The fire pit is quite a distance away, since the site is so large. We were closer and more level for full hookup on this site, than we had been on site 99 in May 2015.

Site 71

I studied Google maps and campsite photos a bit before our stay because I thought the online photos were confusing. When I saw how the sites near us are laid out after we arrived, I put the detail into an overhead screen shot below. Remember that all photos in this blog can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Aerial view

Labeled map

Hiking, downtown, misc.

There were only a couple of minor differences or new bits of information this trip. Downtown, the service was not as good at Paddle Hard Brewing as it had been last October. The wine tasting room next door (Valley Mist Vineyards), had a new coffee wine. I love coffee so I was surprised I did not like it. I sampled coffee vodka for the first time also about a week after this, and I thought the vodka was great.

Trail that departs from Visitor Center toward campground
We hiked from our campsite on the outside loop toward the picnic area and Old Growth Forest Trail. There were no signs on the trail when it ended at the main road between the picnic area and the parking lot for the Logging Museum. Turn right, if you want to go to the Logging Museum, and turn left to go to the picnic area.

Let me know if you have any questions. Please share this post of others!