Pine National Scenic River Watercraft Permits (Huron Manistee)

Huron-Manistee National Forests

Welcome to the Wild and Scenic Pine River!

The lower 26 miles of the Pine River was designated as a National Scenic River in 1992. Scenery is one of the most outstanding attributes of the river. The designated portion of the river contains a unique riparian landform with a deeply incised river channel and high, exposed, fragile sand banks. Dense vegetation contributes to the picturesque setting of the river.

The river gradient offers the fastest average flow of any river in lower Michigan.

Camping within the river corridor on National Forest lands is prohibited, except at Peterson Bridge Campground in the Huron-Manistee National Forests. Fees for using river access sites are charged under the Recreation Fee Enhancement Act.

Permit & Season Information

This permit allows the permit holder and their group to use one floating watercraft. Permits are available up to six months in advance. Watercraft permits are required for all watercraft, including tubes, from the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend through the Monday of Labor Day Weekend. Permits are required for all watercraft on the Pine River between Elm Flats and Low Bridge.

Printing Your Permit

You will be allowed to print your permit 14 days before your launch date. Changes cannot be made to the permit once it has been printed. Do not print your permit until you are sure you will not be making any changes. Either a paper copy or digital copy (PDF) of your printed permit will be accepted and must be presented when requested. You have to print the permit from your Recreation.gov account (whether on paper or as a PDF) for the permit to be considered issued. The confirmation email will not be accepted as proof of a permit.

Need to Know

The safety of visitors and protection of this wonderful, natural resource, are always our top priorities. As such, securing your permit also comes with agreement from you and your guests to the following:

Additional trip planning information includes:

Lincoln Bridge Launch Site information:

Fee Policy

The Reservation Fee ($6.00) is non-refundable. All parties floating the National Scenic Pine River must also pay a recreation fee in the amount of $2.00 per day per watercraft.

Watercraft permits are required for all watercraft, including tubes and stand-up paddle boards, from the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend through the Monday of Labor Day Weekend.

Printing Your Permit

You will be allowed to print your permit 14 days before your launch date. Changes cannot be made to the permit once it has been printed. Do not print your permit until you are sure you will not be making any changes. Either a paper copy or digital copy (PDF) of your printed permit will be accepted and must be presented when requested. You have to print the permit from your Recreation.gov account (whether on paper or as a PDF) for the permit to be considered issued. The confirmation email will not be accepted as proof of a permit.

Recreation Enhancement Act Fees are required at many Huron-Manistee National Forest River landings. Onsite fees are $5 per vehicle per day. Yearly and lifetime passes are sold at District Offices (Manistee, Baldwin, and Cadillac). Learn more about recreation passes and permits in this area.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation Policy

There are no refunds for canceling a reservation once you have printed your permit. Please note, your confirmation letter is not your permit.

Reservation Changes

Changes to the number of watercraft (8 maximum) on the reservation are allowed at any time prior to printing your permit. Increasing or decreasing the number of watercraft will incur additional fees/refunds. Changes to your trip date will require you to cancel your current reservation and reserve the desired date if permits (quota) are available. A reservation fee will be applied to the new reservation.

Contact Information

Mailing Address

412 Red Apple Road Manistee MI 49660

TTY Dial 711 for Relay Service

Mailing Address

650 N. Michigan Ave. Drawer D Baldwin MI 49304

TTY Dial 711 for Relay Service

Phone Number

231-723-2211

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