Watersmeet Ranger District

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Watersmeet RD Office in winter

The Watersmeet Ranger District is one of five districts on the almost one million acre Ottawa National Forest. The District has approximately 25 people who manage a variety of traditional lands, fisheries, recreation and timber programs. Both the Wilderness and the recreation area receive high use, particularly during the summer season. Six developed campgrounds and a major visitor center, add to the heavy recreation program. The Ottawa Visitor Center is currently open year round with about 30,000 annual visitors.

Watersmeet is located in Michigan's Western Upper Peninsula, an area known for its woods and waters. This Headwaters area boasts beautiful, deep, clear, glacially formed lakes that provide water to the Lake Superior, Lake Michigan and Mississippi Watersheds. Waterfalls are numerous and the major attractions to thousands of visitors annually.
The Watersmeet area is a perfect spot for fishing, picnicking, swimming, boating, canoeing, hiking, camping and hunting for grouse, black bear and white tailed deer. Tourism and timber products are the major industries in this area of forested hills and interspersed lakes and rivers. There are several resorts for those who wish to come to the Northwoods to stay in a comfortable cottage, or the Sylvania Wilderness for those wishing a more primitive experience in a pristine setting.
Watersmeet is in Big Snow Country where the rolling hills provide some of the best cross-country skiing in the mid-west. With snowfall averaging more than 100 inches a year, skiing usually begins in early December and sometimes doesn't end until after Easter. A half-dozen Alpine ski resorts are nearby - with Thanksgiving the declared opener for some. Major snowmobile trails cross the district and some trails even take the riders to view waterfalls in winter splendor

At a Glance

Usage: Light-Medium

General Information


To get to the Watersmeet Ranger District take US 45 North from the US2 intersection and then turn right on old US2.  Go about 1 mile and the district is on your left.

General Notes:

Look for the Watersmeet Ranger District mid-late summer 2010 in their new District Offices.


From Watersmeet, Mi go north on US45 for approx 1 mile from intersection with US2. Turn East on Old US2 and travel east for approximately 7 miles to the campground. From Ontonagon, Mi take US45 south 43 miles and turn left on Old US2 and travel east for 7 miles.

Recreation Map

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Camping & Cabins

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Dispersed Camping

Areas for Dispersed Camping at Watersmeet Ranger District

Group Camping

Areas for Group Camping at Watersmeet Ranger District

Campground Camping

Areas for Campground Camping at Watersmeet Ranger District


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Nature Viewing

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Outdoor Learning

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Water Activities

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Winter Sports

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