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Advice for finding a hiking companion in Michigan.

Hello REI community,

With a looming divorce I recently decided it's time to follow a desire I once had to backpack, I live in Michigan and have two ideas in mind, however, in both instances I believe it is best I find someone to go hiking with. Covid 19 already makes things difficult, but not having someone to go with makes it even worse. I am wondering if this community is a place I could possibly reach out to people and possibly find someone to join me, or if people have suggestions where I can look. Is there a Meetups group for this? I don't use Facebook currently so that's not an option.

I am looking to go either to Smoky Mountains or Michigan's UP early October (I know opposite directions, lol).

Will appreciate any suggestions. Thank you!


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23 Replies

Thank you so much for the advice! I was actually thinking in of doing the Shoreline trail, but will definitely check out the places you suggested!

@Gidonj That's another great place! You will tend to see more people along that trail, as it connects with a lot of shorter day-hike trails with access to Lake Superior, but it's still a beautiful trail and would make a great beginner backpacking trip!

I'll most likely have some questions once I check the links! This really is very helpful!

@bryndsharp , will I need to reserve the campsites you mentioned in your description of the Little Carp River Road/Superior/Mirror Lake/Lily Pond hike?

It looks amazing, and I'm inclined to do that as opposed to the Lakeshore Trail.

@Gidonj Yes, all campsites must be reserved in advance! They are $5 per person per night. You can reserve them at this link. Be sure to select "backcountry" at the top of the screen so you can find the backcountry campsites. If you are so inclined, there are also backcountry cabins you can reserve!

@Gidonj Just wanted to give you a heads up that it looks like campsite prices have changed - they are now $15 per night, no matter how many people are camping. I am not sure if this is permanent, or perhaps related to the end of September/early October being peak color season for the UP. That being said, you should try to get out for a backpacking trip during peak color season (predicted to be the last week of September for the UP this year)!

@bryndsharp Thank you, I noticed that as well when I was looking to reserve a spot, I didn't reserve a spot yet but not surprised given the dates I'm looking into, they are all available, so maybe the prices will change soon... I wish I could go earlier but those are the only dates I can go, hopefully the colors are still out.

I really appreciate your advice and the time you are taking to help. 

@Gidonj If you go after peak colors, just be sure to keep a close eye on the weather forecast, as the UP will be heading towards late fall/early winter after the leaves are done. Best of luck, and let me know if you need any advice on packing/prep based on the foreseen weather conditions or other factors!

Well, it now appears that I am officially going and doing the Porkies loop, and was very lucky because nearly all the sites were reserved. It also seems I may be lucky with the weather. Will appreciate any recommendations you have for the time I'm out there. I have a water filter, other than the lakes are there streams along the way I can use to fill up? 

Thank you again for the advice!  

Hi @Gidonj, that's great! I am going to send you a direct message using this platform so we can talk all of the details.