Explore the most popular views trails in Huron National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Nice and quiet trail tucked away in northern Michigan. I found a wonderful spot to camp next to Byron lake about halfway through the loop and finished the loop on day 2.

Cool sites on Byron Lake, looking forward to going back later in the summer and checking out the other lakes.

backpacking
19 days ago

went hiking with 13 yr old son. arrived 6:45 am and hiked around the outside loop to the north and then cut through the middle down a 2 track to North Hoist Lake. grabbed a site on a hill above the Lake. weather was a little hot, 74, for backpacking for my liking. didn't encounter anyone on the trail until Sunday on 4th way back in. plenty of dead wood for burning. wished I had a fishing pole as we saw plenty of fish jumping. watched a family of beavers work all day long which was pretty cool. trail was decently marked. saw several downed blue diamond signs probably just early in the season. heard lots of woodpeckers and geese. came across a dead coyote. Good trip will come back... with a fishing pole. bring correct change for the deposit slip... dummy me only had a $20.

hiking
25 days ago

Camped at Cooke Dam and then hiked. Trail has some very nice overlooks and when you get to the high elevation it is pretty flat for a good while. It did not feel like it was as long as it was

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful and the dunes were the best part

hiking
1 month ago

This trail is gorgeous - and not very well known. The little brother to the Manistee River Trail but very similar and way less people and more remote.

Nice trails. Beautiful scenery. Went end of March, trails were a little slippery in spots , but overall good.

hiking
2 months ago

I have spent a fair amount of time in this area. It’s a very “doable” hike for just about anyone. That’s the best part. I took my family with me today. We spotted a vehicle so we could just walk it one way. Enough snow on the trail to make things occasionally slippery but not enough to need snowshoes. Very pretty red pines and other lowland boreal forest looking terrain. It’s worth the hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Best hiking trail in lower Michigan.

hiking
2 months ago

Cool trail that travels along the AuSable River. Trailhead is at Largo Springs and passes through Canoer’s Memorial and Lumbermans Monument. 6.4 miles one way. Great dune views near end.

hiking
6 months ago

great trail, until i found a hunter in a blind 10yds off trail right by the river

hiking
7 months ago

One of the most scenic lower Michigan hikes you can do. Run down the dunes to the river and back up again.

I work in this area and the trail actually had multiple loops you can take. There are also campsites you can stay at with fire pits available.

Great views of the river!

hiking
9 months ago

Miles of hiking along the AuSable River with some gorgeous views. I'm ready to go back this year to spot all the fall colors (maybe even make time for a canoe trip on the river). One of the best hiking trails to represent my hometown. ❤❤❤❤

Nice trail, easy walking with no obsticals. The view looking down the hill into the river is great.

hiking
10 months ago

We took the lower trail - the Potawatomi. We found the trail was poorly maintained; there were multiple trees - medium to small - that had fallen on the trail, there was a fair amount of plant growth on the path, which would not have been so bad had it not been ladden with poison ivy. So much of my viewing pleasure was taken by constantly having to watch for the poisonous plant that it greatly detracted from enjoying the vistas. Additionally this trail was heavily filled with mosquitoes so be prepared for that too.

specifically says no bikes.

We hiked 7.8 miles around Byron Lake and had a wonderful time. the trail was well marked and we never lost the trail. we were prepared for ticks but only saw one thankfully! the Byron Lake camping site was clean and the beach/water looked nice. The only people we saw on the hike were some fishermen at the lake.

backpacking
10 months ago

did a two day 1 night hike here, started from the east trailhead, hiked the 9 mile path to Byron lake one the first day and the 6 mile path back to the trailhead on the second day.

there were parts of the trail that required a bit of bushwacking and about 15 trees down over the trail but nothing that was a real problem. the trail is very well marked and the map is well done.

the campsites at Byron lake were quite nice and very pretty. We only walked past the north hoist lake sites but they looked nice as well.

surprisingly fewer mosquitoes than I expected for a rainy weekend in July but we did get quite a few ticks. long pants are a must for this one.

$5/ day self service parking fee at the lot cash or check.

all in all a good trail, it's not listed correctly on this app. it is a 16 mile loop if you take the long way, but you can shortcut it if you want to.

Beautiful trail hike got cut short from Thunderstorms can't wait take go back an finish up :)

backpacking
11 months ago

Took a two day backpacking trip on this trail. It was a really nice trail and was very well maintained with a parking lot on both the east and west sides of the footpath. The campsites near the southeast lake are well placed with gorgeous views. Got a bit cold while we were there but the weather was to be expected for this time of year.

backpacking
11 months ago

really nice to for hiking or backpacking. the trials are clearly marked and well taken care of. I like the fact you can take moderate or hard paths. this is a trail I would recommend to anyone who wants to challenge themselves. the only thing I wish they had was more water refill locations.

backpacking
Sunday, May 21, 2017

Great 3 day weekend, 15 mile loop, saw wildlife, caught fish and enjoyed a clean less traveled trail.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

5 out of 5 stars if not for the tick infestation. We were vigilant with tick checks and removing them from our legs, but I still had to pry one out of my foot. Pretty good fishing, caught several smaller bluegill in north hoist for dinner. Caught a nice size rainbow trout in south hoist as well. The campsites were excellent minus the previous camper's trash that I had to gather and burn. I especially enjoyed the seclusion. You have to hike 2 miles to get to the sites and lakes, with no vehicle access or bicycles allowed.

Monday, April 10, 2017

very nice trail did all 8 Miles on 9/Apr/2017 all but two trees cleared from the path. Very nice trail to have as my first trail of the year. Easy enough to follow, next time going to go through a little slower and get a few pictures.

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Been running and training on this trail for years. Just challenging enough to keep it tough but gentle enough to keep it fun.

hiking
Saturday, February 25, 2017

The trail itself is slightly hard to follow in certain spots due to downed trees, but that just adds to the beauty of the area. Very large hemlock and even seedlings that have been planted by volunteer groups can be found. Easy access to the trail and restrooms off of Chase Bridge Road too!

backpacking
Sunday, January 22, 2017

Pretty decent backpacking loop for a weekend. Stretch it into a Saturday afternoon/Sunday night in September. Good time of year to go, as it sounds like the ticks are a nightmare. Overall the location is pretty remote and quite the drive for me (Kalamazoo area) took around 3 1/2 to 4 hours. I enjoyed the remoteness of Hoist Lakes. I began at the eastern trailhead accessible from MI-65/72. Parking is $5.00 per day which is deposited in a self-service tube. I began the large trail loop south and made my way past north and south hoist lakes. These lakes were more or less ponds, but they were nice to look at. After making my way up a couple hills I made my way down to Bryan lake. During the duration of the hike I may have seen a handful of day hikers, however when getting to the Bryan lake their were plenty of hikers who appeared to have snagged the best spots. I found a nice site on the east side of the lake overlooking the largest lake in the hoist lakes area. After a pretty chilly night, I made my way north completing the trail in a couple hours. After completion I had a couple thoughts, the north side was more difficult, in which I would recommend on day 1. There wasn't too many sights on the north side however. The lakes were just okay, nothing spectacular. The trails are marked very well! The numbered poles with maps and nails showing your location made the hike enjoyable. Additionally marking the difficulty per post was helpful to gauge how hard each section would be.

I would try this trail in another year or so.

hiking
Sunday, October 23, 2016

Very nice hike along the water. Entrance trail near boat launch was a little tight. Start at marker 10 for an easier hike, farther from the water. Great geocaches!

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