Erosion brings down plumbing at McLain

MDNR lowers camping fees

Michigan Department of Natural Resources image This map of F.J. McLain State Park shows scheduled construction improvements during Phase 1 of the park’s recently approved master plan.

HOUGHTON — Make your camping reservations now if you want to save $10, and don’t mind some construction and no modern plumbing.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is temporarily lowering camping and lodging fees at F.J. McLain State Park for the upcoming camping season, anticipating the potential unavailability of flush toilets and showers, according to a recent MDNR press release.

“Due to erosion along the campground shoreline we may not have flush toilets or showers available for the 2017 camping season,” said Jamie Metheringham, unit supervisor for McLain and Twin Lakes state parks. “For this reason, we will be charging semi-modern rates for campsites and mini-cabins.”

Semi-modern campsites will cost $18 per night, down from $28, until repairs can be made. Several mini cabins will go for $39, rather than $49.

“We appreciate your patience during this transition period, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause,” Metheringham said.

The 443-acre park is located on M-203 between Calumet and Hancock, about 10 miles northwest of Hancock.

Severe storms occurring in September 2014 and January 2015 produced erosion that ate away park roadways, utilities and large sections of embankment forced the closure of a dozen lakefront campsites.

Another 18 lakefront campsites, six mini-cabins and the park’s toilet and shower buildings remained threatened with closure because of the continued erosion.

A master plan developed a few months ago will provide a template for future development and infrastructure replacement over the next 60 years to deal with the continued loss of infrastructure by Lake Superior wave action, according to the release.

Construction work on the initial phase of park repairs is scheduled to begin in spring.

Water, electric, and the sanitation station will be available, however short-term utility interruptions could occur during construction throughout the 2017 camping season.

Visitors to F.J. McLain State Park can enjoy a variety of activities in the park ranging from fishing, windsurfing, berry picking, beachcombing, camping, rock hounding, sight-seeing and hunting.

“The sunsets at McLain State Park are spectacular and the view of the lighthouse is magnificent,” the release stated, adding the park features two miles of windswept Lake Superior beachfront.

For more information on Michigan’s state parks, visit the DNR’s webpage at http://www.michigan.gov/dnr.


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