Island Lake Recreation Area is a 4,000-acre park in Livingston County that offers an "up north" experience without leaving southeast Michigan. The terrain is a mixture of open brush land to mature hardwood forest, with some pockets of open meadows mixed in. Island Lake is the only balloon port in the state park system. Balloons usually take off in the early morning or late evening, depending on the wind and weather.
Nice campground for family and activities. Good dock for the kids to fish
Island lake really does feel like you’re up north with the hours spent on I-75. There are great hiking trails that give novice and Intermediate hikers a chance to sharpen their skills. Signs are well marked throughout the park. Also, lots to do here swimming, hiking, biking, overall outdoor fun. I’ve biked here and have hiked here several times. Great location without having to drive too far.
Island Lake Recreation Area is home to two Huron River Canoe Camps. The sites are boat-in only (!) meaning you must haul any and all gear in a kayak or canoe for your stay. The sites, Canoe Camp #1 and #2, can be only be reserved by calling or visiting the main office.
This is an awesome place to stay, especially if you live in the area, as it provides a backcountry, boat-in camping experience very close to town. The sites each feature a fire ring and picnic table. Canoe #1 sports a floating dock to tie up boats. There is also a vault toilet, and firewood provided for both sites to share, as well recycling and trash cans.
The sites and common area (toilet and garbage cans) are connected by short trails and you may, once in awhile, hear the folks at the site next to you. Thankfully, In my experience, people have always been friendly and respectful.