If you ever wanted to see a state park before it’s a state park, here’s your chance. Straight Lake State Park is about two and a half hours away from Duluth, near Luck, Wisconsin.
It is, legally, already a state park, but don’t look for big brown road signs to help you find it. The tiny yellow marker pictured above is all I found. (And when I asked people at a convenience store a few miles away for directions, the best advice I could get was “try asking at the library.”)
There’s an old ATV trail that runs through it (can’t drive those in there anymore) but otherwise there are not really any established trails, maps, parking spots, campsites, ranger stations, etc. (There are little flags here and there that show where some of those things might go some day.)
It is quite a nice lake, so I do recommend it. I wouldn’t say you should drive the 120+ miles from Duluth for this single purpose, but if you’re in the area, check it out.