Located in Michigan, the Isle Royale National park is another lesser known National Park that also requires visitors to be transported by either boat or seaplane. We recently talked about Dry Tortugas National Park, which also is remote enough to use boat or seaplane for visitors.
The History of Isle Royale National Park
In 1976, the park was turned into a dedicated wilderness preservation area. With over 175 miles for hiking and 36 campsites, this National Park is perfect for your adventure loving family. Rock Harbor is a great place to hike as well as the Windigo area.
Things to do while visiting Isle Royale National Park
Perhaps canoeing and kayaking are more up your alley. Never fear, you can do that too! There are tons of lakes, bays, and islands to explore while you are visiting the park. If you don’t have a kayak or a canoe to bring along on your trip, then there are some available for rent.
There are a wide variety of animals in the park that you can get up close and personal with, assuming the members of your party don’t scare them off!
An interesting thing to note is that there has been an effort in the last few years to build strong packs of wolves that live on Isle Royale. This has been an ongoing effort. Some wolves that were introduced have died, one left on its on (via an ice bridge) but the wolves that have stayed are thriving.
There are historic lighthouses and shipwrecks, ancient copper mining sites, and plenty of spots to observe the moose, wolves, loons, beaver, fox, and other small mammals and birdlife.
Shipwreck Scuba Diving
Many scuba enthusiasts will come to Isle Royale because there are numerous ship wreck sites to be explored. Be aware, that a dive near a shipwreck can be treacherous at times and it is recommended that advanced divers take on the shipwreck sites around Isle Royale.
That being said, there are ten shipwreck sites in the area to explore. You can read about the shipwrecks and the features of each on the NPS Site.
There is a lodge on site, called the Rock Harbor Lodge, these cabins and rooms are nestled into the woods with beautiful views out each window!
The lodge is located on the northeast end of Isle Royale National Park. Additionally the lodge is the only full-service lodging facility on the island. Facilities and services in Rock Harbor are available seasonally (typically June-September) so you will want to plan accordingly.
Things to Know about Isle Royal National Park
Isle Royal National Park is one of the few spots in North America that you can very clearly see the Northern Lights. A visit to the park on a clear night will delight you with a light show.
There are an abundance of moose on the isle that migrated over when Lake Superior was frozen over many, many years ago. A hike around the isle will delight you with a chance to see moose up close and personal, from a safe distance of course!
Have you visited this National Park? If you haven’t, do you think you will add it to your National Park bucket list?