A Shiawassee Basin Preserve Early Morning Adventure

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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A few fireflies still twinkled on the dark side of dawn as I prepared to head to the Shiawassee Basin Preserve, a 515-acre sanctuary managed by Springfield Township Parks and Recreation. My plan last Saturday morning was simple. Drive 20 miles from my house to the Village of Davisburg and then head north on Eaton Road to the northernmost access point of this heavily wooded, glacially sculpted preserve to capture summer sunrise images and trail tales amidst its moraines, meadows and wetlands. Things did not go as I planned, but sometimes that happens when exploring on the wilder side of Oakland County.

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Paddles on the Shiawassee: A River Trail in Oakland County

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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Oakland County has an abundance of distinct landforms and exceptional natural features created by retreating glaciers. One of these features is a trail, with partially submerged logs, low-hanging branches, a beaver dam, Great Blue Herons, Great Egrets, muskrats, deer and sunning turtles. A trail best explored armed with a spirit of adventure and a paddle. Cascades of colorful leaves, small rapids, and a pulse-raising five second journey through a culvert under an active railway all add to this Pure Michigan style adventure. Paddlers need not travel far for this adventure. It’s right here on the Wilder Side of Oakland County as it meanders gently between the towns of Holly and Fenton. Continue reading

Protecting the Saginaw Bay Watershed & the Headwaters of the Shiawassee River

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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The Shiawassee River Heritage Water Trail presents a seven mile, nature-embracing, Oakland County stretch that takes paddlers from Holly to Fenton through woodlands, meadows, and farmlands.  Nearby, Great Blue Heron’s stalk their prey, around sunning turtles and over very small rapids. Paddlers also have the pulse-raising excitement of slipping over a small beaver dam, passing through large culverts that go under an active railway, and perhaps spying a passing Bald Eagle. Continue reading

Paddling the Huron River Water Trail

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

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Oakland County has over 1,400 natural lakes, and headwaters of five major rivers: the Clinton, Flint, Huron, Rouge and Shiawassee Rivers. This is the story of a very small section of the 104 mile Huron River Water Trail, a beautiful river that rises from the Huron Swamp at Indian Springs Metropark. It then flows southwest through Pontiac Lake State Recreation Area, downtown Milford and Kensington Metropark before entering Livingston County and the Island Lake State Recreation Area. The river’s journey ends at Lake Erie. Continue reading