Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

Grand Island Loop is a 21.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Munising, Michigan that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 21.2 mi Elevation gain 1,026 ft Route type Loop

Dogs on leash

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Mountain biking

Nature trips

Bike touring

Bird watching

Beach

Cave

Forest

Lake

River

Views

Bugs

Muddy

Fee

Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Getting There

The island has a number of trails and designated camping zones, sites cost $8.

Plenty of parking at the ferry launch.

You have to take a ferry that costs roughly $15 per person and once you get to the island, you camp just about anywhere you like.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (102)
Photos (198)
Recordings (68)
Completed (146)
Megan L.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 7, 2020
Mountain bikingMuddyRocky

Beautiful but very difficult trail! Some parts we had to walk our bikes because the trail was so rough.

tyler grissman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
Backpacking
View tyler's Recording
Grant Garbinski
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 2, 2020
HikingBugs

Grand Island is fantastic. The lower third of the island is VERY buggy, so plan accordingly. I stayed two nights, one at Gull Point and the other at Hardwood. Highly recommend Gull Point as it was one of the best sunsets I’d ever seen! Shelter Ridge and Preservation Point looked like the two best though. The views and beach on the north end of the island are incredible. Echo Lake is cool, but skippable. Also, the bridge on the north end is most definitely usable... Have a Grand time!

View Grant's Recording
Elizabeth Zelaya
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 28, 2020
Mountain bikingMuddy

Great trial, it was quite difficult especially if you are beginner like me. Be sure to go with time, lost of water, and food. We got there in the 11 am ferry and finished at 5:50pm right before the last ferry. There were bugs but it wasn’t crazy. I would not recommend to take the detour, it wasn’t worthy and it was very difficult to go through. The views were breathtaking tho. I can’t wait to go back with more time and camp.

Joe Santelio
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 22, 2020
Mountain bikingMuddy
View Joe's Recording
Kevin McCarty
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 22, 2020
Hiking

Great island! We camped at Gull Point - the bridge isn't out, I wouldn't take the detour. Rained for like 2 days prior and the day we started our trek. It was a moist forest for sure, have the right kind of socks. And bring a backup pair.

View Kevin's Recording
Emma Griffiths
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 16, 2020
BackpackingBugsFeeMuddy

Great trail. Would definitely recommend. It was pretty buggy but with some good bug repellent, we didn’t have any issues. Trail is very wet, bring extra socks. We random camped the first night, but I definitely preferred camping at a site. Random camping is difficult to find an ideal spot. I would recommend skipping the detour into Echo lake. It was an extra mile-ish of hiking and it wasn’t worth it. Or at least if you do, drop your bags at the main trail and just walk in. Overall, we had a nice time. Trail was sparsely populated. Mostly people on bikes but I think we only saw 30 or so people over the whole time. Mostly within 3 miles of the ferry dock. Cost $20 to ride the ferry. Only one ferry per hour from 9A-6P, so plan accordingly! Great for a first time backpacking trip if you’re up for the distance!

View Emma's Recording
Emma Griffiths
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 14, 2020
HikingBugs
View Emma's Recording
Bradley Free
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 13, 2020
Hiking

Amazing time. Took our time, did 2 nights/days hike. After seeing all the camp sites, Roads End and Gull Point was our favorite. Freighter view was 3rd by a hair!! Easy trail, good water access! Remember the bug spray!

Rami Maleh
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 3, 2020
HikingBugs
View Rami's Recording
Sky Farrell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 2, 2020
BackpackingBridge outBugs

A bridge was out of commission which added a few 3-4 miles through buggy forest but we didn't mind. Random camping is difficult even using a hammock but the designated sites are absolutely gorgeous and near the cliffs. It's an easy to moderate trail and we did 26.5 miles in 3 days so we had time to take it easy. Bug spray is necessary but they're not so bad while you're near the edges of the island. This was an absolute blast and I can't wait to go back.

Hailey J.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 2, 2020
Backpacking

I completed this trail in late August a couple years ago with my family. It’s moderately strenuous but well maintained and so beautiful. It’s what got me hooked on backpacking. If you have the opportunity to hike here, take it.

Brittany V
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 2, 2020
BackpackingBugs

Mosquitoes pretty much carried us off the island. We were supposed to camp three nights, but left after one. Might have been better with treated clothes and LOTS of bug spray, but even our dog was getting eaten alive. We'll try another time when we're not being swarmed.

Rita Merino
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 29, 2020
BackpackingBugsMuddy
View Rita's Recording
Rita Merino
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 28, 2020
Hiking

90% uphill from mile 1-10. still absolutely worth it and gorgeous. be sure you have water packed or water filtration, or both.

View Rita's Recording
Matt Brewster
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 28, 2020
BackpackingBugs
View Matt's Recording
Roxie Bell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 24, 2020
Mountain bikingBugsFloodedMuddy

Combination backpacking, biking, and climbing. Gorgeous views.

View Roxie's Recording
Kyle McKinney
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 25, 2019
BackpackingBugs

Bring your bug spray if it’s not a cool, breezy day. Water sources aren’t necessarily convenient for filtering so take plenty of water. Amazing views. Great camp sites. Very well marked trails. Can’t wait to go back.

Kristine Olsson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 22, 2019
Mountain biking

our Air bnb host suggested this. we aren't mountain bikers, but decided to try it. we were so glad! beautiful views, wonderful, pristine forest, and challenging hills that at the same time weren't too technical for us. we took the 10am ferry and got back in time for the 4pm, with a stop for a picnic lunch near "Freighter View" campground, where we sat on the amazing cliff overlooking Lake Superior. we were warned of supernatural levels of bugginess, but found it no worse than SE Mich forests, and no trouble at all while biking or while out of the woods.

Brett Kuhn
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 19, 2019
HikingBugs

What an Incredible journey this trail is! Not by any means should it be rated difficult. Moderate at hardest considering we hiked the entire loop. My girlfriend and I had reserved the freighter view campsite, but it stormed the day we were going to go. We decided to just go the next day and take our chances, which was perfect. We found a spot to random camp (slept in a hammock) on the North East point, watched the incredible northern michigan sunset, and got up early for the perfect sunrise. We hiked to North beach day one, but the bugs ran us off the beach.. literally. There were swarms 20-30 big at least and they were vicious. we think they even mated in our stuff because the next morning we had issues with them as well. I wish there were more overlooks of the cliffs, but the views and secluded feeling you get when youre on the north half of the island is what we live for. Got to do some swimming in trout bay on the way out, day 2. we went west rim to east rim, which i would recommend. wear long sleeves if youre going out on the north beach. only spot we saw bugs.

travisnielsen User
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 28, 2019
HikingBugs

If you want to go the entire 21+ miles of the full loop, be sure to give yourself about 7 hours, assuming you go at a pretty quick pace and only take a short break or two. The last ferry to the island leaves at 6 PM during the summer so you should probably catch the 9, 10, or 11 AM ferry to the island to have enough time for the full loop. (You can find more info about the ferry at grandislandup.com and to get to the landing, put this into your navigation: Grand Island Landing Rd, Munising, MI 49862; $20/adult.) If 21+ miles is too far because you’ve got a bum knee or it’s just too far to hike, you can take a slightly shorter route by cutting through the island so you can at least see the east and west coasts of this beautiful place. Lots of flowers and butterflies in late July—but lots of mosquitoes and biting sand flies too, so bring a face net and some Deet along with pants and a long-sleeve shirt. However, if you can avoid the middle of the island, I would. It has less to see, except maybe a brief photo opportunity at Echo Lake, and there seemed to be a lot more bugs in the island’s interior compared to the coasts. Overall, the hike was great, we saw a lot of beautiful natural scenery, and it felt like there were only a handful of other people on the island, since we only ran into three or four other groups during the 3.5 hours we were hiking. If you’re looking for a quick place to get in the water, then I would suggest going westward along the trail (clockwise around the island). There are several sandy beaches perfect for a quick dip. Pit toilets and trash cans at the landing; be sure to pack it in and pack it out!

View travisnielsen's Recording
Mailyn Miller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 21, 2019
HikingBugs

I just got done hiking this trail and I loved it! There were sections where the bugs weren’t as bad and others where you just had to keep moving to keep them off you. I highly suggest staying at a reserved camp site, we did and it made the end of the day a lot easier. As we passed some we noticed a few of the early on camp sites had fire wood supplied for them. Make sure you bring a couple water bottles because a few of the beach access points were closed so there was a good stretch without a place to refill or filter water. With all of this, it was a beautiful trail with breathtaking views. Overall a great experience and I plan on doing this one again.

Diana Devlin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 30, 2019
BackpackingBugsMuddy
View Diana's Recording
Showing results 1 - 23 of 102