paddlers companion order linkCanoeing, kayaking, biking, walking, swimming, and fishing are great ways to enjoy the Huron River. Our RiverUp! projects improve, create, and promote recreational access to the river from Milford through Ypsilanti and down to Flat Rock and Lake Erie. HRWC manages the Huron River Water Trail program, which is part of our RiverUp! initiative.

Water Trail Access

Approximately 40 access points to the Water Trail are owned and maintained by a variety of land owners, all of whom are Huron River Water Trail (HRWT) partners.

Universal Boat Access

We evaluated 35 sites for Universal Access opportunities and are selecting some for eventual construction. Pictured here, a universal boat access ramp now available at Geddes Park in Ann Arbor.

Boat Ramp for Portages and Putting in

Sometimes paddlers need to get their boats down a steep slope from a parking area or to get around a dam. These boat ramps make this process much easier.

Riverfront Steps

These stairs in Ypsilanti were crumbling. But not anymore! We added a railing to make them safer too.

Camping Platforms

At 104 miles, the Huron River Water Trail takes days to paddle. We are working with partners to get camping platforms placed along the trail.

Dam Portages

13 dams are located on the Huron River and all require safe portages. All portages have been evaluated and we are leading or supporting these improvement projects in addition to the ones featured below: Kent Lake Dam Portage, Island Lake State Recreation Area (completed), French Landing Dam Portage (in process), and Flat Rock Dam (in process).



A dock was the best fit for portage access at Ypsilanti's Peninsular Park

Gravel Surface

We installed a gravel pathway at this Ford Lake Dam (Ypsilanti) site

Long ramp for a steep slope

The Barton Dam in Ann Arbor is quite steep so we added this boat ramp to make the portage easier.

Put in calmer water

This rock vane calms the waves for a smoother entry and exit at Superior Dam (Superior Township)

Smoother entry at Flook Dam

New, wider stairs and a rock vane to tame waves make for a better portage at Flook Dam (Baseline) in Dexter.

Water Trail Maintenance


Water Trail Clean-ups

Every year we do litter clean-ups in and along the river in several locations including Milford, Dexter, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Flat Rock.


Experienced paddlers adopt trail sections to monitor at the beginning and end of paddling season. They report issues like blockages, graffiti on our signs, and damaged infrastructure. Sometimes they help us fix these issues too.

Promoting River Recreation

Getting the Word Out

We place ads in tourism and local publications to get the word out about the Huron River Water Trail. Our efforts help connect people to our home waters in a way that is fun while adding to our local economy. We also table at events and festivals to answer questions and get feedback/suggestions.

Know Before you Go

The HRWT website online tool lets you plan before heading out. Paddling options and trail features are mapped with recommended trips to last a few hours to a few days. Investigate the distance, time, level of difficulty, highlights, portages, and more for each recommended trip.

Promoting Safety and Responsibility

We have life jacket education and distribution projects, portage how-to videos, and other safety and etiquette education programs.