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Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park


Aaron Zagrodnick
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Aaron Zagrodnick

One of the premier backpacking destinations in the Midwest. The Porkies - Located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula - has trails spread across its 60,000 acres, offering hikers plenty of choices to keep things interesting. Here's our look at the park from Issue 1:

Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park

Issue 1 Page 1

Backpacking in the Porcupine Mountains Along Lake Superior

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  • 4 years later...

A great place in winter too.  My kids prefer the Porkies downhill ski area over Salt Lake City's Alta and Snowbird.

In summer, beware the bugs of May-July.  Fall colors on cool, blue-sky days are mind-blowing.  In all but winter, protect your food from bears.  (Yes, there's stories applicable to all those tips.)

The other super-awesome backpacking trail of the upper Midwest has to be the Superior Hiking Trail from Duluth, MN to Canada. .. but this one is linear.  You can make a loop of almost any size in the Porkies.

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Aaron Zagrodnick

Never had a chance to make it out in winter unfortunately. Bug (and mud) season I definitely have experienced however! Great place, always wanted to check out the Superior Hiking Trail and perhaps make it over to Isle Royale, as well.

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  • 4 weeks later...

While I live in Michigan, I've never hiked the Porkies. It's my understanding that the per night fee for backpacking has recently (last couple of years) dramatically increased but I don't remember where I heard/read that now. Correct me if I'm wrong.

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$15/Night. I suppose that's not too bad. I guess I've just been spoiled with low fees or free. I'm sure I'll end up in the Porkies sooner or later.

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  • 10 months later...

We did a loop there in 2017 over 5 days in the middle of June.  There is no need to carry more than a liter of water with all the creeks and falls in the area. The bugs were ferocious. The views were great. The down trees across the trails were plentiful. And the memories were indelible. 

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