Insights From Wapiti

Advice, news and thought leadership from our experts.

Outdoor Fun in the Upper Peninsula

For locum providers considering an opportunity in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, one of the main selling points is the area’s natural beauty. From waterfalls and breathtaking vistas to white water rafting and hiking trails, you’ll find plenty of activities and gorgeous scenery to explore. With Springtime not too far away, it’s a great time to start planning how to spend your downtime in Michigan. 

Here are a few natural attractions that make the Upper Peninsula a coveted destination for locum providers who enjoy the outdoors. 


Kitch-Iti-Kipi, which means “Big cold spring” in Ojibwa, is located in Palm Books State Park in Thompson Township. The lake maintains a constant temperature of 45 degrees. Swimming isn’t allowed (although few people would brave the water anyway), and neither is fishing. However, the crystal clear water gives you a beautiful view of the bubbling spring that feeds Kitch-Iti-Kipi and the fish that inhabit it. 

16 Minutes from Manistique, MI

Fish swimming in Kitch-Iti-Kipi in Michigan

Tahquamenon Falls State Park

Michigan’s second-largest state park (over 46,000 acres) is home to some of the most breathtaking waterfalls in the Upper Peninsula. The crown jewel is the 50-foot tall Upper Tahquamenon Falls, nicknamed “Root Beer Falls” due to the native trees and plants that give the water a brown appearance. Other attractions include abundant wildlife, 35 miles of hiking trails, and the Tahquamenon River. Tahquamenon Falls State Park is also a favorite of cross-country skiers and snowmobilers during the winter. 

2 Hours 18 Minutes from Marquette, MI

Upper Tahquamenon Falls, nicknamed "Root Beer Falls" in the Upper Peninsula

Miners Castle Rock

Miners Castle Rock is the most impressive of the many rock formations that rise along the Southern shore of Lake Superior. It offers visitors an unforgettable view of the water and Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. The observation area is well-maintained and easily accessible. Aside from the natural wonder of Pictured Rocks, the remnants of shipwrecks dot the shore near the lighthouse on Au Sable point, open to visitors from mid-June to September. 

2 Hours 37 Minutes from Iron River, MI

Miners Castle Rock on the shore of Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula

Menominee River

This 116-mile river in the Upper Peninsula forms a portion of the boundary between Michigan and Wisconsin. There are opportunities for white water rafting(class 2 and 3), kayaking, and canoeing. Hikers can choose from the Pemene Falls or Sand Portage Falls Hiking Trail. Fishing, hunting, and trapping are allowed within the Menominee River State Recreation Area. 

1 Hours 58 Minutes from Manistique, MI

Man white water kayaking

Mackinac Island State Park

Established in 1895, Mackinac Island is one of the oldest National Parks in the U.S. The park boasts over 70 miles of hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails. There are also historical sites to explore, including Fort Mackinac, founded during the Revolutionary War. For a fee, you can even fire the cannon at the iconic fort. 

1 Hours 58 Minutes (plus 45 minute ferry ride) from Alpena, MI

Cannon pointing at the water from fort

Isle Royale

Accessible by ferry or seaplane in the Upper Peninsula, Isle Royale, along with more than 400 smaller islands comprise the Isle Royale National Park. The largest island in Lake Superior, Isle Royale has camping grounds with varying degrees of remoteness. The secluded nature of the park makes it an ideal choice for locum providers looking to recharge their batteries. Opportunities abound for hiking, boating, and diving. 

3 Hours 14 Minutes (plus 3 hour ferry ride) from Alpena, MI

Rocky shore of an island on Lake Superior

This is far from a comprehensive list of opportunities to enjoy what the Upper Peninsula offers for outdoor recreation. Go here for more ideas and additional information on the attractions featured here

Are you a locum provider looking for an opportunity in the Upper Peninsula or elsewhere in the upper Midwest? Your job search should start with Wapiti!