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North Manitou Island

Pack your bag and lace up those hiking boots! Join us to explore the wild beauty of Northern Michigan on a 6-day backpacking adventure on North Manitou Island!

Trip Overview

Experience a quintessential Great Lakes backpacking adventure on our 6-day trip to North Manitou Island with Crystalaire Adventures! 


North Manitou Island is one of our most popular trips and fills quickly each season. As the larger and wilder of the two Manitou Islands, North Manitou offers hikers a more secluded and primitive backcountry camping experience than our South Manitou Island trip.  

Note: This trip can be done as a stand-alone program or paired with your camper's one- or two-week session at Camp Carvela or Camp Lookout as an "add-on" adventure.

Trip Type



Group Size

10-12 Campers

2+ Guides


Middle School

Grades 6-8


Crystalaire HQ 

Traverse City, MI

Expedition Itinerary

Day 1

Participants will meet at Moose Hall, aka "Crystalaire Adventures HQ," located at Camp Carvela.* Together, we'll pack up our gear and then travel by van to Leland, MI where we will board a ferry to North Manitou Island. Once we arrive, we'll set up camp and celebrate the start of our trip with a welcome ceremony. 

*Note: Campers joining this trip from Camp Lookout will be shuttled to Moose Hall via van by Project Foxwood staff. 

Days 2-5

In keeping with our choice-based learning and leadership philosophy, participants will collectively plan our trip itinerary. Together as a group, we'll choose which trails we hike, which sites we visit, and which activities we try, creating a one-of-a-kind experience that reflects the unique interests and personalities of our group. From sand dunes and beaches to meadows full of wildflowers, we'll have plenty of options to choose from when planning our daily adventures.  And whether we're on the trail or cooking around a campfire, we'll be learning about the land, each other, and ourselves.  

Day 6

On the final day of our trip, we'll break down our final campsite, pack up our gear, and take the ferry back to the mainland before driving home to Moose Lodge. Once back at the Lodge, we'll unload and clean our group gear and then say our final goodbyes to our new adventure buddies.


Camper pick-up will take place at Moose Lodge between 2-4 PM. 


Trip Highlights

 Here's what you can look forward to on your North Manitou Island adventure:

  • Camper-led itinerary

  • Small group size

  • Leave-no-trace backpacking

  • Old-growth forests

  • Dune climbing

  • and more!


Enrollment for our 2024 North Manitou trips is open! Select your preferred trip date and then click "ENROLL" to complete your enrollment form.

Have questions? We'd love to chat! Please email us at info@crystalaireadventures for more information.


About North Manitou Island

North Manitou Island is located in Lake Michigan, about 12 miles northwest of Leland, MI. The Island is part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.


North Manitou Island has a rich maritime and agricultural history that offers visitors countless unique sites to explore, including offshore shipwrecks and abandoned homesteads.  .

Known for its sand dunes, old-growth forests, and plentiful wildlife, North Manitou Island offers backpackers a unique Great Lakes escape that is full of adventure!

Learn more at

More Trips to Consider

Looking for an another adventure? Check out our lineup of upcoming trips and expeditions to find the one that's right for you!  

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