McLain State Park

F.J. McLain State Park is a 443-acre (179 ha) public recreation area on the Keweenaw Peninsula in Houghton County, Michigan. The state park is located on M-203 halfway between Hancock and Calumet.[4] It is about 10 miles (16 km) from each city.[5] The park's offshore sights include sunsets over Lake Superior and the art deco–style Keweenaw Waterway Upper Entrance Light.[6]

F.J. McLain State Park
McLain State Park Lake Superior beach shorline.JPG
Map showing the location of F.J. McLain State Park
Map showing the location of F.J. McLain State Park
Location in Michigan
LocationHancock Township, Houghton County, Michigan, United States
Nearest cityCalumet, Michigan
Coordinates47°14′13″N 88°36′33″W / 47.23694°N 88.60917°W / 47.23694; -88.60917Coordinates: 47°14′13″N 88°36′33″W / 47.23694°N 88.60917°W / 47.23694; -88.60917[2]
Area443 acres (179 ha)
Elevation620 feet (190 m) [2]
DesignationMichigan state park
Named forFrederick J. McLain
AdministratorMichigan Department of Natural Resources
WebsiteMcLain State Park
Sunset over Lake Superior


The park is named after Houghton County Commissioner Frederick J. McLain, an instrumental figure in securing land for the site in the 1930s. Laborers working through the Work Projects Administration (WPA) performed most of the park's construction. A new entrance and contact station were built in 1965, following the relocation of M-203.[6]

Activities and amenitiesEdit

While the majority of the shoreline is rocky, a stretch known as "the Breakwaters" near the Keweenaw Waterway at the park's southern end provides a sandy beach for swimming.[7] The park also offers fishing, picnicking, hiking and cross-country skiing trails, camping, and cabins.[4]

During the first week of the fall semester, Michigan Technological University cancels afternoon classes to allow students and faculty to hold "K-Day" (or "Keweenaw Day") at the park.[8]

The spelling of the park's name is inconsistent on roadsigns and in local publications, varying between "McLain", "MacLain", and "McClain", and is often referred to by locals as "McLain's."


  1. ^ "McLain State Park". IUCN. Retrieved April 8, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "McLain State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  3. ^ "When were Michigan state parks and recreation areas established?" (PDF). Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved April 8, 2020.
  4. ^ a b "F.J. McLain State Park". Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved March 6, 2018.
  5. ^ "F.J. McLain State Park". Retrieved November 15, 2011.
  6. ^ a b "McLain State Park General Management Plan, Appendix A — Supporting Analysis" (PDF). Michigan Department of Natural Resources. March 27, 2015. Retrieved April 8, 2020.
  7. ^ "F.J. McLain State Park". Outdoorsy. Retrieved April 8, 2020.
  8. ^ "K-Day". Michigan Technological University. Retrieved March 6, 2018.

External linksEdit