Fall foliage sightseeing: Numerous nature preserves available throughout mid-Michigan

It’s fall foliage season in mid-Michigan and the Chippewa Watershed Conservancy wants you to know it.

The land conservancy organization is touting the strength of its 22 nature preserves as prime locations for sight-seeing.

"I believe October is the very best time to explore our 600-plus acres of permanently protected natural areas throughout the region," says CWC Executive Director Jon Breithaupt.

"Taking a hike at Bundy Hill Preserve or Sylvan Solace Preserve is optimal right now as fall foliage colors are peaking, leaves crunch beneath your feet and the crisp air keeps you cool."

Chippewa Watershed Conservancy recently celebrated the grand opening of a two-mile long hiking trail at the Bundy Hill Preserve. It’s estimated that more than 50 volunteers spent over 700 hours over the course of six months to construct the hiking trail.

More than 600 acres of trails are available for the whole family

"The trail network traverse mature hardwood forest, fascinating geology and offers many scenic vistas for hikers. We encourage folks to explore the new trails on the preserve," Breithaupt said at the time of its opening.

The conservancy also suggests Audubon Woods Preserve, Sylvan Solace Preserve, and Halls Lake Natural Area as mid-Michigan preserves with trail systems, forest communities, signage, and parking.

Breithaupt does suggest that hikers wear hunter’s orange when walking the preserves as they border historically hunted properties. It is bow season for white-tailed deer.

"Folks can visit our website, give us a call or drop by our office on the second floor of the Hersee House in downtown Mt. Pleasant to learn more about our environmental education programs or recreational opportunities on our preserves," says Breithaupt.

Visit Chippewa Watershed Conservancy online to learn more about its nature preserves.

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