Dark and Mysterious Turtle Island

Most people in the area know that this island is the near twin of Four Winds Island which was once owned by Camp Martin Johnson and that island does have buildings on it.  But, Turtle Island, owned by the Manistee National Forest, is shrouded in more mystery.  No structures are found there yet some people do camp on this island.  Take notice of the fallen tree toward the side of this island.  It extends its way into Big Bass Lake quite a few feet.

Here you can observe that fallen tree extending out into Big Bass Lake somewhat easier.  I would also take it that it is in this area where most campers erect their tents.  Or might it be on the open side of the island? 

I would like to know something about the interior of Turtle Island.  Is is marshy?  Could a building be erected on it?  How far is it from Four Winds Island?  And, have any of our readers camped out on this island?  Now, I’ve already dubbed Matson’s Island as Turtle Island so I don’t want to go so far as to rename this isle Mysterious Island but it is somewhat just that. 

That is until some of my questions get answered.  Besides Turtle, or Pirates Island as some call it, is such a tame name for this place.  Mysterious Island makes one want to go out there and explore it.  So, what’s stopping you from doing just that?

2 thoughts on “Dark and Mysterious Turtle Island

  1. Hi Dave, Turtle island is kind of shaped like a turtle. It kind of sticks out on the north and south ends and is wider in the center. It also sticks up in the center quite high…like a snapper turtles shell. People enter the island from a rather steep opening on the west side of the island. As you climb up, the island has a clearing on top that kind of flattens out some what. This is where campers pitch their tents and have a small fire pit. In the past few years there have been some campers that have decided they would cut some trees down to use as firewood. I believe this is what prompted the DNR to place the sign telling people the island is truly part of the Manistee National Forest and littering and cutting of any trees or wood is prohibited. Many times I take my dog out there to swim on the shallow sand bar that protrudes off of the north end. I always make it a point to pick up any litter that is left behind. On the south end of the island there is a really amazing display of lilly pads and wild irise’s that grow at the shores edge. It is a really cool little island. In a few weeks I will be there and I will take pictures all around and of the interior for you, the fall colors mixed with the birch and pines are stunning!!


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