What to do in Petoskey State Park

Situated on 305 acres of sandy bayside land, Petoskey State Park has experienced a number of landowners. The park was originally deeded to Pay-Me-Gwau under an Ottawa Indian treaty in July of 1855. Later, much of the land was the site of the W.W. Rice Company. In 1934, the City of Petoskey purchased the land and named it the Petoskey Bathing Beach. In April of 1968, the beach was sold to the State of Michigan. On May 21, 1969, the State was given the title to the land. Today, guests come to the park year round to enjoy a variety of outdoor pursuits including collecting Petoskey Stones.

The park is located between Harbor Springs and Petoskey, both known for their shopping districts, local arts and crafts shops, shows and restaurants. There are no boat launch facilities in the park, but Harbor Springs and Petoskey each have several launches that provide access to Little Traverse Bay. Many nearby inland lakes also have boat launches. Fishing, jet-skiing and water-skiing are popular activities in the area.

The Oden Fish Hatchery is a short drive from the park and one of the most advanced facitilies of its kind. For anyone interested in how brook and brown trout are raised, this is the premier destination.

Petoskey State Park is known for its stone collecting opportunities. Petoskey Stones, which are found in abundance and can be polished and made into various items or used for display. The stone is actually a fossilized coral from the Devonian Period (350 million years ago). These ancient corals are found only in the rock strata called Gravel Point Formation, which is a combination of limestone and shale. This particular formation is restricted to the Little Traverse Bay area.

The park has two separate campgrounds. Tannery Creek offers 98 campsites and Dunes offers 70 campsites. All of the sites have electric hookups and modern bathroom and shower facilities. Camping facilities are open April 1 to December 1. The modern toilets are not available the first and last months. There are two mini-cabins available for rent in the park. The cabins have been named the Trillium and the Orchid. Both have electricity, two sets of bunk beds, a table and four chairs. A picnic table, fire ring, and a grill are available outside the cabin
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The day use area of Petoskey State Park includes a picnic ground with tables and grills, a children's playground, a beach house and a mile-long beach for swimming and sunbathing.

There are no boat launch facilities in the park, but Harbor Springs and Petoskey each have several launches that provide access to Little Traverse Bay. Many nearby inland lakes also have boat launches. Fishing and water sports are popular activities in the area.

Two trails run through Petoskey State Park. Old Baldy Trail includes a stairway that leads up Old Baldy, a stable dune that is one of the attractions in the park. After climbing the dune, the view that is available of the bay is breathtaking. The Portage Trail winds through very diverse terrain where a nature lover may find different species of plants and wildlife.

Cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, winter hiking, and nature study are all popular winter activities. Snowmobiling is prohibited in the park.

The park is located quite close to the towns of Harbor Springs and Petoskey. They both are known for their shopping districts, local arts and crafts shops, shows and restaurants.

Recreation
Rock collecting is one of the main attraction s of Petoskey State Park. Visitors combine rock collecting with camping, boating, fishing, hiking, and an array of winter activities.

Camping
Petoskey-Dunes Modern - (800) 447-2757, 70 site(s), $27
Petoskey-Tannery Creek Modern - (800) 447-2757, 98 site(s), $29/$27/$16
Petoskey- Group Use Area - (231) 347-2311, Contact the park.

Trail
Petoskey-Portage Trail - 2.5 (Miles), Hiking, Cross Country Ski
Petoskey-Old Baldy - 0.5 (Miles), Hiking

Location
Petoskey State Park is located on Lake Michigan's Little Traverse Bay about midway between Harbor Springs and Petoskey. To reach the park take US-31 north of Petoskey to M-119 and go west 1.5 miles.

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.

Address
2475 M-119
Petoskey, MI 49770

Phone: 231-347-2311

  • Petoskey State Park Travel Q&A