Tent Sites
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Water Unknown
About Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness
USDA Forest Service
Walk In
Hike In
+ More
Alcohol Allowed
Fires Allowed
Firewood Available
Pets Allowed
Trash Available
No WiFi
Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness is located in Michigan
44.087 N
-86.445 W
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12 Reviews of Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness
Rustic camping with no neighbors!

Rustic camping off two tracks throughout the area. We never have neighbors! Lake Michigan rec area is adjacent with beach access and trails to walk. Hamlin Lake at Ludington State Park is not far and has an interpretive canoe trail. If you need showers you can pay at the corner store on the main Rd. No facilities, bring a shovel.

Woodsy and lakeshore - the best of both worlds!

Requires about a 30-45 minute hike in, so pack accordingly! We slept on the beach, which we didn't realize was illegal, but there are plenty of woodsy spots. There are sand dunes, beach, and woodsy spots. The perfect getaway, with plenty of space to spread out and explore.

Great park

Very well maintained park with fabulous hiking trails along the lake and through the forest. We did the dunes loop and loved the variety of changing terrain. We were able to explore the forest, the interdunal area, as well as the beach where some fascinating metal pieces had washed ashore.

Be careful, we were there in May and there were TONS of ticks. Check frequently and bring a brush for easy removal.

Amazing Hike In / Hike out camping

One of my favorite place to hike in / backpack camp. There are sites available just off of Lake Michigan and one close enough to trail heads that we have taken young children (4 years old and up) to this area. Unfortunately, and why I only give a three star rating is that in the past few years, other campers have left, trash and human excrement out in the open. Not digging a hole and burying it. The DNR people who work at this site do what they can. Unfortunately some rude campers are ruining the experience for everyone else.

$350 dollar views for the price of parking

This is a dispersed camping beginners and long-time backpackers can all enjoy. It’s roughly a mile hike in to where the campsites begin, and there’s a ton to choose from. The views are so beautiful. There is nothing like waking up in the woods to roll over and see the Lake Michigan shore line. If you are up to it, this is part of a six mile loop.

The hike is predominately on a sandy dirt terrain and your legs will burn on the hike in, but it doesn’t last long. It is a popular spot for backpackers especially from Grand Rapids but for beginner backpackers it can be comforting to not be completely isolated the first time you backpack.

Just to clarify this is a hike-in style of camping with no water wells, electricity, or outhouses. We recommend it to any person wanting to get started backpacking and plan on making it a yearly trip. The bugs were not bad from the wind off the shore.

Parking is $5

Dispersed camping

Beautiful shoreline of Dunes and forest.

$5 Daily use fee/Parking

Hike about 2 miles from the parking area. The wilderness boundary line is marked. Bring a trash bag to pack out when leaving. Paradise of a place to disperse camp. Go during the offtime or during the week as some weekends bustle with traffic.

Disperse Camping on Lake MI

Best location in W MI for disperse camping. Parking is limited. $6/night. NO ACCOMMODATIONS. Hike in only. Only 1 mile hike. Do not bring large coolers, you see many left behind. Raccoons will steal unsecured food.

lake wilderness at its best

This is a nice short hike into lake wilderness to see Lake Michigan like never before. With the exception of a speed boat or fellow hiker we were all alone on this trip with tons of swimming. It can get hot during the day with minimal shade so it is good to plan for that with a shade tent of some sort. We camped for 2 nights and had a blast.

Campground and Hike-in Backcountry sites

First time here and really enjoyed it! Can't speak for the actual campground because we hiked into our site. There is a $5.00 fee to park your car per day, and there are two different entry points to the Wilderness Trail. We went from the main lot, but may try the alternate trail head next time.

We only went about a mile to a mile and a half down the trail before setting on a site. There are not defined sites, but you are supposed to stay at sites that have been previously used for camping. Easy way to te tell is that there will be a stomped trail down to the water from the site. Also, can't speak for the entire trail since didn't do it all, but to get down to the backcountry sites it is a pretty steep decent. We had little kids in our group, so just be aware and take your time.

The camping is about 100 feet from Lake Michigan and it is spectacular. Saw awesome sunsets, played in the water (sandbar extends pretty far out and water was quite warm), and didn't see too many people the whole time we were camping.

Only complaint I have was that saw used toilet paper at different points near the trail. Just disappointed in people sometimes. Will be back regardless.

Beautiful lake front backcountry camping

There is an actual campground, but we chose to hike in about a mile and then camp on the beach. It was beautiful, the water almost looked Caribbean ocean blue. The sand was clean and secluded enough. Only complaint was that some previous campers didn’t always seem to know practices for camping without facilities and we found a bit of toilet paper along the ridge of the hills. Otherwise awesome place, also porcupines and raccoons are there. Be sure you are hanging your food.