Outdoor AdventureHiking

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It’s summer … time for fresh air, sunshine, biking, hiking and s’mores by the campfire. It’s time to relax by the lake, listen to the birds and just breathe. It’s time for the great outdoors! Michigan has the best trails, lakes and streams in the country and you can find perfect examples in and around Genesee County. So, throw on the hiking boots, break out the tent and enjoy as My City Magazine takes you
Into the Great Outdoors!
Whether you are a local or just visiting for a weekend, the trails in our area are a constant source of wonder and you won’t be disappointed. Great trails and nature paths are hidden all over Genesee County and the surrounding areas – perfect for exercise, birding, picnics or a simple, leisurely walk. So, oil up the bike chain, lace up the hiking boots, strap on the backpack and hit the trail!

For-Mar Nature Preserve and Arboretum

Burton
Length: 1-4 miles
N. Genesee Rd. to Potter Rd.
A favorite place of scientists, birders and naturalists, this is one of Genesee County’s shining jewels. The preserve is a maze of numbered trails that move through layers of scenery, from fields to forests to streams and ponds. Visit the Visitor’s Center for a map that will help you plan a path to all of the highlights, including: three bridges spanning Kearsley Creek, three separate ponds, the tree house, multiple gardens and a butterfly area. For-Mar is also the home to hundreds of bird species, turkeys, deer and other wildlife.

Richfield County Park

Length: 2 miles (Loop)
This park offers a quick, 2-mile loop great for horseback riding, a nice jog or leisurely walk. The path crosses one of the County’s most iconic bridges and winds around five picnic pavilions, three baseball fields, a tennis court, basketball court and through forest areas. After a nice warm-up walk on the trails, launch your kayak and paddle the Flint River. The park is also home to the one of Michigan’s best BMX bike courses and the Goldenrod Disc Golf Course.

Flint River Trail

Length: 17 miles
Ballenger Hwy. to Vassar Rd.
This is the perfect way for a newcomer to see all of the great places, parks and people in the City of Flint. Those following the trail will find a unique blend of nature and urban life. The trail starts off of Ballenger Hwy., runs past Kettering University, Atwood Stadium and through Riverbank Park where the trail meets up with Chevy Commons and the Genesee Valley Trail. The trail continues north through Dayton Park, Whaley Park and Riverside Park. When the route meets the southern end of Mott Lake, the hiker/biker has a dilemma – head toward Bluebell Beach where the trail ends, or Stepping Stone Falls where it continues. Past the Falls, the trail follows Mott Lake to the Vietnam Memorial, then out to Vassar Road.

Atlas County Park

Length: 1.2 miles
Goodrich (Loop)
Hegel Rd. across from Goodrich High
Opened in 2018, this is one of the newest County Parks. The trail fires straight back through the wilderness to picturesque overlooks of Kearsley Creek and Atlas Millpond. Take a fishing pole with you and catch a few, or bring a kayak and paddle down the creek and around the Millpond. The trails are quiet and peaceful … hike here to relax and leave civilization behind.

Southern Links Trailway

Length: 10.2 miles
Water and 1st St. (Columbiaville) to Cardinal Dr. and Gleason St. (Millington)
This trail links the villages of Columbiaville, Otter Lake and Millington. It has become one of Michigan’s favorite biking destinations, moving through lush, scenic landscapes with well-placed benches and picnic tables lining the way. It began as a vision of Lonnie Kester, a local farmer who purchased the former Penn Central Railroad line in order to create a trail for all to enjoy. You will not be disappointed on your ride down this amazing trail!

Holly State Recreation Area

Length: 6-8 miles
Wildwood Rd. to McGinnis Rd. with Mt. Bike access on Hess Rd.
This is one of the premier wilderness escapes in Southern Michigan, stretching over 8,000 acres and offering a bevy of trails and attractions. Hike the wilderness trail around McGinnis Lake or the Lakeshore Trail as it lines Valley Lake to the south. If you need to cool off, hit Heron Lake beach and take a swim. Feeling adventurous? Tackle the 23.4 miles of challenging mountain bike trails near the Holdridge Lakes. The recreation area is also home to the Holly Woods Disc Golf Course and a designated radio-controlled flying field.

Creasey Bicentennial Park

Grand Blanc
Length: 2.7 miles
Grand Blanc Rd. to Hill Rd.
Starting at the park entrance, this trail winds through all of the park amenities such as basketball courts, pond, playground, splashpad, soccer and softball fields to Reid Rd. The trail picks up at Grand Blanc West Middle School and continues north to Hill Rd. Enjoy a leisurely jog or walk through Grand Blanc’s finest outdoor attraction.

Black Creek and Jack Abernathy Park

Davison
Length: 2.6 miles
Jack Abernathy Park to Irish Rd.
Take the kids on an easy trek through Jack Abernathy Park and along Black Creek. Have fun in the playscape area, take a dip at Lake Callis (or play on the splash pad) and pet the puppies at the Davison Area Dog Park. Finish your walk through the forest alongside Black Creek. The most popular outdoor attraction in Davison, the trails are always full of great people enjoying fresh air and good times.

Clio Park Trail

Length 12.3 miles
Neff Rd. to Willard Rd. (access points on Wilson and Jennings)
This the second largest trail in Genesee County, running from Neff Rd. through Clio Park and following the old trolley line all the way to Willard Rd. The terrain moves from heavy forest to downtown cityscape to farmland as far as the eye can see. Enjoy the gamut of Genesee County scenery on a trail that doesn’t disappoint. Stop by the Clio Amphitheater on your way and take in a show!

Grand Blanc Commons

Length: 1-3 miles Behind McFarlen Library (Loop)
On farmland once owned by the McFarlen family, this nature preserve is located just behind McFarlen Library on Perry Rd. An extremely popular location for bird-watching, the trails are perfectly rustic yet well-defined, but mostly left to nature. Don’t be surprised to see Boy Scouts and other survivalists out and about. While hiking, make sure to find the Applegate Farm ruins, the pond and the Big Oak Tree.

Flushing County Park

Length: 1 mile (Loop)
This little, 1-mile trail weaves around the pavilions, exercise equipment and terrain of Flushing County Park and then, makes its way across the Flint River, following its banks all the way to Main St. For a new perspective, bring your kayak and follow the same path via the waterway.

Buell Lake County Park

Clio
Length: 1 mile
Buell County Park (Loop)
This quaint, 1-mile loop through the park provides a great view of Buell Lake and the nature that surrounds it. Bring your fishing pole and kayak to spend an evening on or at the water. For the drone and remote-control plane enthusiasts, a designated remote airfield is available.

MCM Challenge: Walk every trail on our list before the summer’s end!

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