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Tahquamenon River Trail



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Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Tahquamenon People

Cross Country Ski Tahquamenon Falls State ParkHike Tahquamenon Falls State ParkKayak Tahquamenon Falls State Park

(Upper Falls, Lower Falls, and Rivermouth)

41382 W. M 123
Paradise MI 49768
Phone Number: (906) 492-3415
TTY/TDD711 (Michigan Relay Center)
Motor Vehicle Permit Required: Yes
Approximate Size: 46179 (Acres)

Trail Distance:

Trail Length: 4 (Miles)


From Mackinac Bridge, continue eight miles north to M 123 at Exit 352. Turn left onto M 123. 55 Miles to Paradise.

From Marquette, take M-28 east 98 miles to M-123. Turn left onto M-123. 29 miles to the park.

From Escanaba, take US-2 east 89 miles to M-117. Head north on M-117 to M-28. Turn right on M-28 and head east 3 miles to M-123. Turn left onto M-123. 29 miles to the park.

Trail Description:

Tahquamenon Falls State Park encompasses close to 50,000 acres stretching over 13 miles. Most of this is undeveloped woodland without roads, buildings or power lines. The centerpiece of the park, and the very reason for its existence, is the Tahquamenon River with its waterfalls. The Upper Falls is one the largest waterfalls east of the Mississippi. It has a drop of nearly 50 feet and is more than 200 feet across. A maximum flow of more than 50,000 gallons of water per second has been recorded cascading over these falls. Four miles downstream is the Lower Falls, a series of five smaller falls cascading around an island. Although not as dramatic as the Upper Falls, they are equally magnificent. The falls can be viewed from the river bank or from the island, which can be reached by rowboat rented from a park concession. The island walk affords a view of the falls in the south channel.

This is the land of Longfellow's Hiawatha - "by the rushing Tahquamenaw" Hiawatha built his canoe. Long before the white man set eyes on the river, the abundance of fish in its waters and animals along its shores attracted the Ojibwa Indians, who camped, farmed, fished and trapped along its banks. In the late 1800's came the lumber barons and the river carried their logs by the millions to the mills. Lumberjacks, who harvested the tall timber, were among the first permanent white settlers in the area.

Rising from springs north of McMillan, the Tahquamenon River drains the watershed of an area of more than 790 square miles. From its source, it meanders 94 miles before emptying into Whitefish Bay. The amber color of the water is caused by tannins leached from the Cedar, Spruce and Hemlock in the swamps drained by the river. The extremely soft water churned by the action of the falls causes the large amounts of foam, which has been the trademark of the Tahquamenon since the days of the voyager.


Year-round Interpretive Program

Nature programs are held 7 days a week from July through September in various locations throughout the park. Program schedules can be found by picking up a copy of the park newspaper. Special events for visitors and campers can be viewed by clicking here. Schools and groups can make reservations for guided tours and programs by contacting the park headquarters at (906) 492-3415.


No hunting areas are clearly posted around the campgrounds and high visitor areas. The rest of the park is open to hunting. Call the park headquarters at (906) 492-3415 if you have any questions.

Designated Watchable Wildlife Site

Moose are occasionally seen feeding in the wet areas of the park, especially along M-123 between Paradise and the Lower Falls. Black bear, coyotes, otter, deer, fox, porcupines, beaver and mink are a few of the other wildlife which can be seen in the park. The abundant bird life includes spruce grouse, pileated woodpeckers, bald eagles and a variety of waterfowl and songbirds. The Wildlife Viewing Guide is now on line at www.michigan.gov/miwildlifeviewing


These play areas offer a variety of playground equipment for children. Each campground has a play area for children with a variety of equipment.


Brown trout, walleye, northern muskie, northern pike, yellow perch, smallmouth bass and more are frequently caught in the Tahquamenon River. ADA accessible shore fishing is available at the Rivermouth Campground.


The Tahquamenon River offers 17 miles of canoeing from the Lower Falls to the Rivermouth area. Put-ins are available both at the Lower Falls and at Rivermouth.

Canoe/Kayak Rental

Boat rentals are available at the Lower Falls concession from Memorial Day to Labor Day for row boats and canoes.

Picnic Area

Picnic tables and fire pits/grills are available.

Picnic Shelters

A shelter at the Lower Falls is available for rent by calling (906) 492-3415.


The park has over 35 miles of hiking trails, enabling people to see beautiful portions of the park that are rarely seen by the public. The North Country Trail traverses 16 miles within the park, including the trail between the Upper and Lower Falls.

This trail is the path from the Lower Falls to the Upper Falls and passes through an old-growth forest of American beech, sugar maple, eastern hemlock and yellow birch.

Snowmobile Area

Permitted on designated trails with 4" or more of snow on the ground.


Park concession is available at the lower falls with souvenirs and limited menu items. The Upper Falls has a privately-owned restaurant and gift shop, which are adjacent to the park property.

Cross Country Ski

The park has four miles of regularly groomed ski trails and is also open to backcountry skiing. See the links below for trail maps and additional information.

Click to see the Tahquamenon River Trail Map

Information courtesy of the Department of Natural Resources

Return to Chippewa County, Michigan Trails

Return to Luce County, Michigan Trails




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