Accessible Parks and Nature Trails to See in Michigan
The Great Lakes State has a multitude of hidden natural gems. From sand dunes formed by the glaciers to immersive waterfalls, there is so much to see and do.
One of the best things about Michigan’s parks and nature centers is that many are universally accessible. These natural wonders are a sight to see and deserve to be experienced by everyone. Check out the list below to plan your next family trip or day outing.
Ocqueoc Falls – Ocqueoc Falls was one of the first universally accessible waterfalls in the nation, made accessible back in 2011. After receiving a grant from the Michigan Natural Resources trust fund, the park was able to undergo renovations that turned it into the amazing barrier-free park it is today. The park offers different routes of varying levels and features a ramp that complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements.
Port Crescent-Dunes Nature Trail – This unique trail showcases scenic dune habitats just off the coast of Lake Huron. This path originated as a 1970s fitness trail but in 2009, an access to recreation grant renovated the trail making it accessible to everyone. Featuring concrete and limestone surfaces, this trail is beautiful and barrier free. It also features interpretive and interactive stops along the trail that describe the landscape for those who have a visual impairment. These signs also offer education to individuals on the history and wildlife of the area.
Grass River Natural Area Rail Trail –
Just south of Lake Bellaire, in the heart of Antrim county is the Grass River Natural Area. Featuring six trails that wind throughout picturesque wetlands and forest, this place is a must visit. One of the most interesting trails is the Fern loop trail. Featuring braille interpretive signs, as well as a guided rope for visually impaired hikers, this is a great inclusive trail.
These are just a few of the many accessible parks in Michigan. Check out the Department of Natural Resources’ website for more accessible parks and get outside to enjoy Michigan’s natural beauty today.
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Photo credit: Aryeh Alex