For these friends, there are three simple criteria for a getaway: must be scenic, must be near a big lake, must be epic. Picture yourself at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore this winter. 

Featured in the February 2019 issue of Traverse Magazine. Get your copy.


the wonder

requires total


Getting Around Pictured Rocks

The modes of transportation are as varied as the people exploring the wild winter shoreline of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. Often old-fashioned boots get you where you need to go. But if the snow is deep, cross-country skis or a snowmobile might be required to cross the dramatic terrain.

Winter Camping at Pictured Rocks 

Many explore the Pictured Rocks area in wintertime and get a brief and undoubtedly awe-inspiring sense of the place. But truly experiencing the wonder requires total immersion. To pick out the finer details requires you to dig deeper and stay longer. The best days are often earned. A long ski or a day of climbing ease the brain into a calm transition. People often cringe at overnighting in the snow but done properly it is very comfortable—as long as nobody forgets the coffee.

Essentials: winter camping checklist + Pictured Rocks campgrounds 

There’s No Place Like Pictured Rocks

The Pictured Rocks area is a wonderland in the wintertime. The ice formations, the weather, the starkness of white against rock. Even the sounds are totally different than at any other time of the year and are specifically unique to the region. Venturing onto a flat, frozen sea alone is its own type of thrill. So is hearing the lake and waterfall ice pop and crack as it settles into the shifts in temperature. Watching the colors of the ice change from seep to seep or time of day and variety of sunlight give this place on the Lake Superior coast a certain level of enchantment.

Epic: Ice caves at Pictured Rocks

Photo(s) by Erik Olsen