Empire Bluff Trail is a 1.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Empire, Michigan that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length1.5 miElevation gain170 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashKid friendlyHikingNature tripsSnowshoeingWalkingRunningBeachForestLakeViews
Waypoints (0)
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Reviews (709)
Photos (655)
Activities (591)
Completed (1,344)
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Chris N
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Hiking

Easy hike that would be great for families to amazing views. As with all popular hikes on NPS lands, getting there early can make a big difference if you don't want to bother with parking and seeing lots of people on the trail.

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James Waldecker
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Hiking

Crowded, but with great views. This trail is family-friendly and pet-friendly. Lots of dogs showed up for this trail. Look out for some boards that have lost some dirt between them; they can be trip hazards. Weather was 48 and sunny today, which was very pleasant.

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S.H. S
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HikingGreat!

What a treat. To all fellow hikers who are not familiar with the area - although Empire Bluff is a part of the Sleeping Bear Dunes trail system you don’t have to pay an entrance fee to do this one.

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Kim Bakker
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Hiking

With my bad knees, the downhill was a bit rough having the erosion planks put in. Also sad to see so many downed trees.

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Melissa Kaltz
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Hiking
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Shannon Bell
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Walking

Lots of trees are down. Anyone know what happened? Favorite trail! Always a beauty

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Amber Palazzo
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Hiking

Easy, family friendly trail. One of the best views in Michigan! One of my favs.

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Mary Johnson
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Hiking
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jeff schropp
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Hiking
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Acacia Holmes
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Hiking

Great kid friendly hike! A bit slushy/slippery still.

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Michael Stumpf
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Hiking

A lot more ice than in August.

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Amy S.
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Hiking

The trail was an ice rink this morning. YakTrax were a must, IMO, although I saw people struggling along without them. Of course the view is worth the struggle!

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brenda denton
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Hiking

Snowy icy trail but beautiful vista. The wind off the lake was bitter.

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Eugene Branigan
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Hiking
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Hanna Szumski
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HikingGreat!IcySnow

Definitely worth doing! Would recommend spikes

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Joe Capuano
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Hiking

Icy conditions wear cleats to make it easier.

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Lily Brown
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Hiking

fun times

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Janessa Jones
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Hiking
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Rayna Skiver
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Hiking

I’ve been here twice, once when it was rainy once when it was sunny. Both times were beautiful! This trail is definitely more busy since it’s popular, but still worth it for sure!

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Evelia Mendoza
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Hiking
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justin jewett
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Hiking
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justin jewett
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Hiking
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Richard Burmeister
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Hiking

Amazing and beautiful!

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Amanda Mulder
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Hiking

Beautiful view

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Rebekah Walter
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HikingSnow

Slick in the winter, but this was great! The trail was moderately hilly, and the views were incredible.

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Susan Laabs
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HikingIcy

Lovely winter hike with a good, doable uphill challenge and lovely views of turquoise Lake Michigan below. Best to wear spikes.

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Kevin Leiter
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Hiking
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Danny M
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Hiking
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