Nature boosts our physical and emotional well-being. Nature helps calm and comfort during difficult times. Now, more than ever, time outside is essential. Thankfully, Nature Is Open! Check out the nature available in the Huron River watershed.

Use the hashtags #natureisopen and #huronriver to share your photos or videos with HRWC as you get outside.

COVID-19 ConsiderationsCorona Get Outside Guidelines

Remember — please keep your distance. When you are in a park or neighborhood, avoid crowds and park equipment and maintain at least 6 feet of distance between you and people you don’t live with. You may need to cross the street or wait far away for others to pass you on a trail. Consider visiting smaller neighborhood parks close to home and places where crowds are less likely. Follow state actions and guidelines at Look at Frequently Asked COVID-19 Questions on Outdoor Recreation.

Remember – expect closures. Please check park and trail websites for closures and updates before heading outside. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources and regional and local parks may have closed or modified public access to many locations, activities and services to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Parks and recreation staffing may be limited or not available.

Finding Nature in the Huron River Watershed

Local Nature Preserves Open to the Public:

Legacy Land Conservancy

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy

Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation

Parks Finder and Trail Explorer for Locating Parks Close to Home:

Check out these handy SEMCOG listings for getting outside in wide open spaces to maintain distancing with others. Make sure you check with the park you plan to visit before heading out.

Southeast Michigan ParkFinder® provides information on all regional parks. You can search parks by their location, or for certain park amenities, such as trails or wildlife watching areas. It is available on SEMCOG’s website, and can be downloaded as a mobile app.

Southeast Michigan Trail Explorer provides a virtual tour of the region’s trail system of more than 1,000 miles of greenways and blueways. It features high-resolution, panoramic, 360-degree images of hiking and biking trails; trail heads and points of interest; rivers and their banks; and river access points and boat/kayak launches. Includes a virtual tour of the Huron River.

Paddling and Fishing the Huron River Water Trail:

The Huron River Water Trail is a 104-mile (167 km) inland paddling trail connecting people to the river’s natural environment, its history and the communities it touches in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. From the rapids at Delhi and Dexter to the placid flat Paddling the Huron Riverwater at the entrance to Lake Erie, a variety of paddling experiences await you. The Water Trail website has information maps, recommended trips, outfitters, river conditions, safety information and more.

Remember – spring flows are high and fast and the water is cold. If you are paddling early in the season, please take extra safety precautions. See Know Before You Go: 4 Tips for a Safe Paddle Trip and  Paddling Safely During COVID-19 for tips. Some amenities at parks and in trail towns will be unavailable for the foreseeable future.

You can also take a VIRTUAL TOUR of the Huron River Water Trail.

Shared Use Trails Near the Huron River for Walking and Biking:

Downriver Linked Greenways

Lakelands Trail State Park

Washtenaw County Border To Border Trail


Remember – leave no trace. With fewer park staff and more people needing to get outside for some nature, it’s essential that everyone pack out all trash to keep ourselves and our parks safe and healthy. Now is a good time to follow the 7 Principles of Leave No Trace.

Remember – be kind. We are all in this together. Be considerate of others in the outdoors by ensuring that you practice physical distancing. Be particularly kind to park staff during these challenging times. Help them do their job by doing your part to take care of each other and our beloved outdoors.