Nature & Outdoor Recreation

Few places can compete with the wildlife, parks, and outdoor activities available in the Great Lakes Bay Region.

Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge

Trails wind through more than 9,800 acres of marsh, bottomland hardwood forest, and grasslands in southern Saginaw County. website

Chippewa Nature Center

One of the largest private non-profit nature centers in the United States is nestled just south of Midland. The Chippewa Nature Center features year-round family programming and over 1,200 acres of woodland. website

Bay City State Park

Camp, hike, and bike along the banks of the Saginaw Bay. Acknowledged as a birding “hot spot”, the park also includes a hands-on museum and watershed exhibit. website

Midland City Forest

Just outside the bustle of Midland’s shopping district lies a quiet wooded haven perfect for mountain biking, cross country skiing, horseback riding, and hiking. website

Rail Trail

Spanning across Saginaw, Midland, Gratiot, Arenac, Clare, and Bay Counties is a network of former railroad tracks that have been converted into paved nature trails.

BaySail Appledore Schooners

The schooner Appledore IV is owned and operated by BaySail, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Bay City, Michigan. Tall ship adventures aboard Appledore IV further BaySail’s mission to “foster environmental stewardship of the Saginaw Bay watershed and the Great Lakes ecosystem and to provide personal development opportunities for learners of all ages through shipboard and land-based educational experiences.” Since its founding in 1998, more than 43,000 young people have experienced a BaySail education program. Website.