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A long time ago, I was a child. (I started out as Cathy First from Colon, Mi.) For the past several years I’ve been an adult. A lot of things went on between those two stages of life; probably no more or no less than anyone elses. My husband and I moved to “da U .P” from southern Lower Michigan several years ago (yes we were trolls at one time). We owned and operated and operate Clementz’s Northcountry Campground and Cabins just north of Newberry, Michigan until May 2015. We have grown kids and grandkids (who all live downstate). My passion is life and all that Nature has to offer us and trying to photograph it in unique ways. Our intention in life is to see all that Nature has to offer us. We hope that you will be a part of our adventures as we cruise through our lives together. Come back often!

Thursday, July 29, 2010


You know how proud we are of our park,  how we relish all the comments/compliments  that I'd say 95% of our guests bestow on us.  And the other 5% that are negative is usually something that they don't understand the "why" behind a rule or they just plain don't respect other people's property.

Dan and I bust our butts to keep our place clean, inviting and a safe place to camp or stay in our lodging.  And again, thankfully, most everyone stops by during their visit to compliment us or to thank us for providing such a beautiful place for them to stay (their words, not mine).

We bust our butts to comply with every request from our insurance agent (hence campground rules for many things, hopefully common sense for others).  We are totally committed to enforcing the State of Michigan Campground Rules and Regulations for Private Parks (most of those are a safety thing meant to protect the public).  And we are committed to our place staying beautiful and green.

The other day, I had a camper who was upset about the FIREWOOD ALERT and that he had to leave his firewood at the bridge.  When I tried to explain to him about the emerald ash borer he said that they have those bugs in his state as well and they are all over, so what is the big difference.  He asked why WE don't allow any campfire wood to be brought into our park, even if he purchased it down the road.  My first question to him was "Why would you purchase it down the road when you get a very generous amount here for the same cost?"  He didn't have an answer.  He wanted to know if it "counted" if he went into our woods and found dead wood, could he bring THAT into the park and use.  I explained that as long as he wasn't just dragging in brush or didn't have wood that too large to fit in the fire pit, not a problem.  He didn't like that either but he did finally purchase wood from us for $3.00.  Sometimes it gets hard to keep being polite, ya know?  Cripes sake, firewood has been the same price for YEARS!

Or you occasionally get a person that complains about the prices of things.  They will agree that our rates are very reasonable but they don't like it that we charge $2.00 extra for cable TV hook up, or $2.00 extra if they use their a/c.  Some of our sites have CATV hook up; some do not, so we're not going to build that extra charge into our rates and basically ask someone to pay for something they may not even use or want.  Same thing with the air conditioning for campers.  Many places already have that cost built into their rates, but as we tell people when they check in "We leave you on your honor as far as  using your air conditioner.  If you use it, please keep track of it and pay us on the way out."  I feel most people DO this with no problem but again, we don't build it into our prices because not everyone even HAS an a/c on their camper or if they do, they might not need it anyway.

Dan and I would rather be able to keep our rates low enough so everyone can have a good time and not have to break the bank to have a vacation vs adding all those things into our price and thereby possibly penalizing someone who does NOT use the CATV or a/c.  It has worked for us for almost 19 years.

But, for the first time in 4 years, we will have a rate increase next year (and NO, we're not adding in those extras to the price).  Rustic will remain the same at $18.00 per night (currently it costs you $16.00 per night to camp in a PRIMITIVE state forest campground, meaning pit toilets and no showers), our electric will be $22.00 per night, water and electric at $24.00 per night and full hook up at $26.00 per night.  Our weekly rates will still be $3.00 less per night and our monthly rates will remain the same at $10 per night for electric, $12 per night for w & e and $13 per night for full hook up.

These changes won't be reflected on our website until the end of this season.  Anyone making reservations for next season though will be charged next year's rates.


  1. Anonymous8:15 AM

    we started following your blog during the fire up there 3 or4 years ago. We camped with you for the first time 2 years ago and will be back again in August. Your park is very nice and clean and for us, we appreciate that you don't tack on the other charges. We don't hvae a tv so why should we pay for cable? We hardly use our air so why should we pay for air? WE think you are doing it the best way. And we have told many people about your park. See you next month around the 15t,

  2. Anonymous8:42 AM

    Ihave visited your park website and you list ALL the prices for eerything there (except I didn't see fire wood price). Are all of your "extras" listed in the woodalls or other publications? Btw, your website is very nice...lots of good info. It is the main reason we have decided to come spend Labor Day in your area.
    Dick and Brenda from southern Indiana

  3. I have visited you website several times and have seen nothing wrong with your campground...in fact the entire UP is beautiful, so why should your place be any different...as far as the fire wood goes...tell him to go camp in the state park...it's at minimum $5.00 a bundle and you only get like 10 pieces of kindling...as far as your prices go you are still cheaper then quite a few of the state parks...thanks for the heads up on the price change...I am thinking of camping with you guys in June of next year...do you guys usually get full around the Soo Locks Engineer's Day?

  4. Anonymous, thanks for your comments. We do value input from others.

    Dick and Brenda (Anonymous 2), with the exception of fire wood, the extra's ARE listed in various publications but places like Woodalls and Trailer Life don't let you break down the extras unless you pay for a large ad. Looking forward to meeting you!

    Amy,WOW!! $5.00 for a bit of firewood! We ARE undercharging! Yep, the state park rates are high when you add in the extras for a tow vehicle and the pass if you don't have a season pass.

  5. Anonymous7:25 PM

    Our relatives made the mistake of camping at your competition and it cost them over $40 for a night for just two people! Even though we didn't think to tell them about your place (we live by Curtis area)they did stop by your place and ended up coming there. They were totally pleased with youyr rates and your sights.

    Kim in Curtis

  6. Kim, Haven't heard from you in a while! It sounds like Curtis is keeping busy with tourism this summer! Thanks for taking the time to post. It is appreciated.


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