Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
138.00 ft (42.06 m)
Trail type
1.20 mi (1.93 km)
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Laughing Whitefish Falls is a popular destination for visitors of the Munising or Marquette area of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is a 0.6-mile one-way hike to reach Laughing Whitefish Falls.  The parking area for Laughing Whitefish Falls is located northwest of Chatham, Michigan about three miles north of Highway M-94.  Laughing Whitefish Falls is located within Laughing Whitefish Falls State Park so a Recreation Passport is required. There is a self-service kiosk near the trailhead where a Recreation Passport can be purchased. Dogs are allowed on this trail if they are on a leash.

The trail that leads to Laughing Whitefish Falls is well-maintained and is quite level. The trail goes through a deciduous forest of beech and maple trees. About half way down the trail there is a trail to the left that connects to the North Country Trail. It is about a three-mile hike to reach the North Country Trail. A little further down the trail there is a fork. This is the start of a small loop, so either path can be taken. The trail ends at the top of the falls. Here the forest has old growth white pine and hemlock trees. There are 155 wooden steps that lead to a viewing platform near the bottom of the falls. Those who don’t want to take all these steps should consider going down two flights of steps for a much better view of the falls than can be seen from the top. Laughing Whitefish Falls is a unique 100-foot-high slide waterfall. The falls are best visited when there is good water flow; during dry periods the flow of water can be quite minimal. Other than the large number of steps to reach the bottom of the falls, this hike is quite easy.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

State Park Day-Use Fee

Open Year-round



Unique waterfall.


Many steps to the bottom of the falls.

Trailhead Elevation

1,042.00 ft (317.60 m)

Highest point

1,042.00 ft (317.60 m)


Near lake or river
Vault toilet
Family friendly
Old-growth forest

Typically multi-day


Permit required



Nearby Lodging + Camping


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