Maybury State Park: A Trail Tale of Two County Connectivity

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

Don’t wait for spring warmth to get your boots on a trail. Some of the very best trails are almost in our backyards, and others are just over the county line. Busy Eight Mile Road is the dividing line between Novi in southernmost Oakland County, and Northville in northernmost Wayne County, and that’s where you’ll find Maybury State Park. The park is without question one of the most popular Michigan State Parks in southeast Michigan. This 940-acre park, managed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, is located entirely on the Wayne County side of Eight Mile Road, but by this summer, access by foot or by bicycle for Oakland County residents will be a lot easier, and much safer. Here’s why:

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Oakland County Is Coyote Country!

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

The eastern coyote (Canis latrans) is an intelligent, curious, and highly adaptable animal. Although once confined to the great American deserts and prairies where they were targets of ceaseless eradication campaigns, coyotes have now colonized our nation from coast to coast. “Unlike wolves, which succumbed quickly to predator control measures, decades of intensive persecution did not eradicate coyotes – the unrelenting pressure on them did invoke an ancient coyote biological imperative: It triggered larger litters of pups and colonization behavior that pushed them into new settings everywhere.” – Dan Flores in his 2016 book Coyote America. Continue reading

Lakeville Swamp Sanctuary: A Sacred Place of Cedars

Wilder Side of Oakland County 

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“I enter the swamp as a sacred place”— Henry David Thoreau.

Cedar swamp habitat takes on a special beauty that is mysterious, captivating and full of wonder in winter. It’s also a vital place of survival for rare species of flora and fauna, functions as a water storage location, and often as an aquifer recharging site. The Lakeville Swamp Sanctuary, managed by the Michigan Nature Association, is one the highest quality wetland complexes found on the Wilder Side of Oakland County. One week has passed since I trekked into that swamp under a light drizzle laced with wet snow flakes. I emerged with mud caking my boots, ankles, knees and backside. I was a bit bruised and slightly scratched, rather wet and tired, yet exceedingly happy and eager to return on a day when the sun shines. Continue reading