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Ludington Adventures: Kibby Creek Campground, Ludington State Park & Big Sable Point Lighthouse

By July 17, 2018Adventures

We opted to skip camping during the 4th of July this year since it fell mid week and the campgrounds are often overcrowded during the Holiday. Instead, we made reservations for the weekend after the Holiday choosing to explore a new campground in the Ludington area called Kibby Creek.

I was excited to check out the Ludington area as it was somewhere my family went when I was a small child.

Upon check in, we received a map with our site circled by a friendly staff member and purchased 3 bundles of firewood from the camp store (for less than $15). Unfortunately, unlike the KOA campgrounds…an employee did not lead you to the site and deliver your firewood. We picked up the wood from a covered trailer allowing it to stay completely dry. We appreciated the wood storage since we have received wet bundles on other trips.

The campground was crowded and busy with narrow roads to navigate so we slowly headed towards the site on the map. A few minutes later, we had arrived to find the site already had campers unpacked. We headed back to the check-in desk and discovered the wrong site had been circled. After apologies from the staff along with a new map and site number, we drove to the correct spot and parked the camper.

Despite the crowds, our site was quite spacious. As we were setting up the camper, we could not find the water hookup until our neighbor showed us that it was actually on their site next to their hookup. This setup was  quite unusual and we discovered that our water hose was not long enough to reach. Garrin walked up to the camp store and thankfully the staff offered to loan a connector hose that reached the hookup without issue.

The campground featured the usual amenities with the camp store offering forgotten essentials, souvenirs and treats such as ice cream and flavored slushies. There was a small playground, pool, arcade and miniature golf course for families to enjoy. There were other outdoor games such as volleyball, basketball, shuffleboard and horseshoes. My favorite spot were the scenic wooded trails and I enjoyed exploring them during the visit. There was a fishing pond through the trails as well.

We also saw this seasonal spot that must have been occupied for years as the trees have grown around the camper. It does not appear the camper could be moved without tree evacuation first!

On Saturday, we ventured to downtown Ludington to explore the town. Pink, white and purple petunias decorated the streets.

Ludington is a harbor town located on Lake Michigan at the mouth of the Pere Marquette River. The area had a feeling of history with older looking buildings and houses. There are two breweries and one winery in town. I hope to visit these spots in the future.

We learned there was an art fair in the park so we walked over to check it out.

Unfortunately, it was quite busy and we discovered it was hard to visit the artisans booths as well as struggling to navigate the Dogger within the crowds.

We strolled along main street and stopped to snap pictures of the local graffiti.

I explored the shops seeing lots of souvenir options. Garrin stopped at a local ice cream shop for a treat before we left.

We decided it was early enough to drive over to Pentwater and visit the shops.

On our way, we passed Hill and Hollow Campground which is the first place we adventured with the new camper.

The area felt very sentimental and I enjoyed walking through Pentwater’s charming town once again.

I even found a Michigan themed souvenir at on of my favorite stores, The Glove before heading back to the campsite.

It was just a short drive to the campground and soon we were relaxing under our awning. One of our neighbors already packed and went home and soon the neighbor on the other side followed. We had the area to ourselves as we made dinner, s’mores and relaxed around the campfire. The furkids took turns sitting on my lap.

On Sunday, we adventured to Ludington State Park and walked around the campgrounds. I’d like to camp here sometime in the future, however you need to book early due to popularity.

We decided to take the near two mile hike out to Big Sable Point Lighthouse with the furkids. It was a sunny warm day as we followed the sandy trail.

Gucci & Tucker walked a fair amount stopping for water breaks, however they soon were tired out. We had left the Dogger in the truck so we each carried a dog for a good portion of the hike. Thank goodness we have small furkids so this was not too hard of a task.

On the way, Garrin hiked up to an old shipwreck for a few photos.

The lighthouse was unique and open so you could go up to the top.

We walked around back, relaxed on a bench and admired Lake Michigan.

I liked the view of the lighthouse from the back so I snapped a photo.

Soon it was time to hike back to the truck. The dogs walked for a while and we carried them part of the way once again.

We stopped at Stearns Park & Beach to view another lighthouse, Ludington North Breakwater Light, in the distance. When I was just a baby, my parents took me to Ludington and I first experienced Lake Michigan. I wonder which beach we visited. Unfortunately, the furkids were not allowed in the area where we parked so we did not stay long.

Ludington also features Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness and Manistee National Forest. These are on the list for a future adventure.

We decided to head back to the campground for dinner and refreshments. A lot of campers had left upon our return so the atmosphere was quite relaxing. We enjoyed exploring the area and taking the dogs on the trail that evening.

And of course, we made s’mores around the campfire once again.

Before packing up in the morning, I baked cinnamon rolls in our small camper oven. It was the first time I had used the oven and it worked very well. I only wish I had snapped a photo, however we devoured the rolls too quickly.

It was a fun trip and we were all sorry to head home. Luckily, the next adventure awaits.

Liz Ball

About Liz Ball

Liz Ball is a freelance writer focusing on Michigan travel and local events in her community.