Marion Lake Campground

Area Status: Closed
This area is Closed

Sign for Marion Lake

Marion Lake Campground, located just 4 miles east of Watersmeet, MI, on the Watersmeet Ranger District, offers tranquility and beauty not often found in other high use campgrounds. Designed to take advantage of their location, lakeside spurs provide grand views of the south and west shores, making each sunset a memorable experience. All sites are spaced with natural vegetation for screening, providing an excellent chance for privacy and solitude. This campground, consisting of three main camping loops with a total of 39 campsites and a well used group camping site, provides drive-in sites that can accommodate tents, trailers, and motor homes. Each site offers an accessible wood table, fire ring, lantern post and parking spur. Five pairs of vault toilet facilities are spaced throughout the campground, while drinking water is provided at centrally located hand pumps and pressurized faucets in each camping loop.  Adjacent to the campground is a sandy beach and day use area. Also adjacent to the campground are two boat landings, which provide access to a variety of game fish.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: The campground will close for the season on the afternoon of Sunday, October 3, 2021. The Forest Service will have a contractor being working on removal and replacment of the culvert on Forest Road 3985 (Marion Lake Road) on Monday, October 4, 2021. The boat launch to the west of the campground will be open for use. Engering and camping after October 3, is prohibited pursuant to 36 CFR 261.58(b).
Operational Hours:  24 hours – self pay
Area Amenities: Accessible,Boat ramp,Tent camping,Camping trailer,Fee charged for some activities,Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water,Parking
Fees $16 a night per campsite, $75 a night for the group campsite, the group campsite must be reserved through the National Recreation Service at 1-888-444-6777 or
Open Season: May 14 - Oct 3
Usage: Medium
Best Season: June-September
Busiest Season: July-August
Restrictions: Fees shown are for the summer recreation period when full services are provided.  During the early spring and late fall when no services are provided the fees at some areas are not charged.

Camping in a developed recreation site is allowed for a period not longer than 14 days, except as otherwise posted. After this time, you must move to another campground or dispersed site for at least 24 hours. Campers must occupy the site the first night. Eight people and 2 motorized vehicles are allowed per campsite with a maximum of one RV or camper trailer and two tents per camping site or three tents per camping site.
Closest Towns: Watersmeet is 6 miles to the west and Iron River is 28 miles to the east
Water: Drinking Water-Hand pumps near sites 3 & 29 and Pressurized Faucets near sites 11, 18, & 24
Restroom: 5 sets of vault toilets in the campground near sites 4, 11, 32, & 40. One set near group campsite
Passes: Golden Age/Interagency Senior Pass and Access Passes are accepted
Operated By: Northwoods Property Management under a special use permit. Contact Chase Erickson at 906-396-5428.
Information Center: The day use area is managed by the Ottawa National Forest. For more information or questions please contact the Watersmeet – Iron River Ranger District at 906-358-4724.

General Information


From Watersmeet, Mi., take US 2 east approximately 4 miles, turn left onto FR 3980 and travel approximately 2 miles to FR 3985, turn right onto FR 3985 and travel approximately ¾ mile to the campground.

From Iron River, Mi., take US 2 west approximately 26 miles, turn right onto FR 3980 and travel approximately 2 miles to FR 3985, turn right onto FR 3985 and travel approximately ¾ mile to the campground.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Camping & Cabins

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Water Activities

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Camping trailer 39 sites & 1 Group Site
Picnic tables 1 in each campsite, 20 in group campsite
Tent camping 39 sites & 1 Group Site
Parking Available near group campsite and boat landing areas
Toilets 5 sets of vault toilets near sites 4, 11, 32, and 40. One set near the group campsite area.
Fee charged for some activities $16 a night for individual campsites and $75 a night for group campsite
Accessible Picnic Tables
Boat ramp Two, 1 located west of campground loop #1 off of FR 3985 and 1 located at the east end of campground loop #2.
Drinking water Hand pumps located in loops 1 & 3 near sites 3 and 29. Pressurized Faucets located in loop #3 near site 11, 18, & 24.