Summer is a good time to explore the natural beauty of Michigan and go backpacking. Metro Detroit is a prime location for access to the state’s most scenic and challenging backpacking venues. Many of these venues offer a number of fun outdoor sports activities. Start planning your next backpacking adventure.
Maybury State Park
20145 Beck Road
Northville, MI 48167
(248) 349-8390
www.michigandnr.org

Maybury State Park is a 1,000-acre Michigan State Park located in Northville with many options for backpacking and other outdoor recreation. The park is located close to metropolitan Detroit and is a nice escape from the big city. The park is great for backpacking because the mix of forest and meadows provide the perfect atmosphere for wildlife spotting and bird watching. When you are taking a break from hiking, you can also choose to go horseback riding at Maybury Stables, visit the working Maybury Farm, fish, go on a picnic or ride your bike. There are also playgrounds for the kids. If you bring your bike, there are trails ideal for both mountain biking and traditional paved trails. A Michigan Recreation Passport is required.

Addison Oaks Park
1480 W. Romeo Road
Leonard, MI 48367
(248) 693-2432
www.destinationoakland.com

Addison Oaks Park, an Oakland County Park, is a good place to camp and backpack. There are many trails and wooded areas to explore on foot. When you want to switch activities, you can choose from renting a kayak, fishing or swimming on Buhl Lake. The park’s 20 miles of trails offer 15 miles of paved trails and special trails for mountain bike riding and horseback riding. This park is also known for mountain bike trails and hosts the annual Addison Oaks Mountain Bike and Handcycle Challenge. A Oakland County daily pass or annual vehicle pass is required.

Huron Meadows Metropark
8765 Hammel Road
Brighton, MI 48116
(734) 426-8211
www.metroparks.com

Huron Meadows Metropark is part of the Huron-Clinton Metroparks System, located in Brighton. One of the scenic attractions of the 1,540-acre park is the oak and hickory tree forest, which is known to attract many of Michigan’s beautiful songbirds. It is also very peaceful by Maltby Lake, where you can fish, sail or swim during breaks from backpacking. The Huron-Clinton Metroparks requires entry passes for vehicles, which can be purchased daily or annually. Hikers can enter for free on foot through the park’s trails or roads.

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Crosswinds Marsh Park
27600 Haggerty Road
New Boston, MI 48164
(734) 654-1220
www.michigan.org

The Crosswinds Marsh Park is a wetlands and wildlife preserve in Wayne County. Crosswinds is a good place for a short backpacking adventure through seven miles of wetlands trails. The wildlife preserve also offers areas for picnicking and fishing. There are also trails for horseback riding. Bald eagles are among the birds reported spotted at this wildlife preserve. Admittance to Crosswinds Marsh Park is free.

Stony Creek Metropark
4300 Main Park Road
Shelby Township, MI 48316
(586) 781-4242
www.metroparks.com

Stony Creek Metropark provides many outdoor recreation activities for a backpacking trip. The 4,461-acre park has trails for good hikes through woodlands, along the lake, through prairies and wetlands. In between hiking expeditions, you can fish at Stony Lake, play golf, visit the nature center or go biking. The park includes both paved trails for hiking and biking as well as mountain bike trails. There are plenty of activities for sports fans with features like an 18-hole regulation golf course, baseball diamonds, basketball courts and soccer fields.  A Metropark Motor Vehicle Entry Permit is required.

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Adrienne Warber is a Freelance Writer with more than 15 years of professional writing experience. After earning a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English from the University of Michigan, Adrienne worked in marketing, where she specialized in communications writing. She is now a full-time freelance writer and writes on many topics, ranging from arts and events to crafts and health. Her work has appeared both in print and online. Her work can be found at Examiner.com and adriennewarber.com.