Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

North Country Trail: Michigan 20 to South Nichols Lake

moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(72)
Manistee National Forest

North Country Trail: Michigan 20 to South Nichols Lake is a 18.3 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near White Cloud, Michigan that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 18.3 mi Elevation gain 800 ft Route type Point to Point

Dogs on leash

Camping

Cross country skiing

Hiking

Mountain biking

Nature trips

Snowshoeing

Walking

Bird watching

Running

Forest

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Waypoints (0)
Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (73)
Photos (87)
Recordings (62)
Completed (137)
Valerie Dynda
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 12, 2020
HikingBugs

We did the hike shown on the map going SOUTH up until baseline road and then turned around. This hike does not lead to a lake as described; getting to that lake would require heading north for 15 miles. It was a fun hike, very peaceful and lots of greenery to see. A little buggy, but not terrible.

Comment from AllTrails

- 28 days ago

This route has been updated. Thank you for the feedback.

Dan Hribar
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 14, 2020
Hiking

Lots to see along the way and a few really nice forested wetlands with diverse bird and plant life.

View Dan's Recording
Kimberly Griffin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 26, 2020
Running

So. Many. Ticks. Beautiful trail though.

Leon Dean
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 20, 2020
HikingBugsMuddy

I second that the description is inaccurate. No lake if you follow the route on the map. Some really cool trees though! There were a decent amount of bugs and a little bit of mud, but nothing we couldn’t manage. Only saw 2 other people on the hike.

Jamie Rachek
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 1, 2020
Hiking

Awesome view of some cool trees

View Jamie's Recording
Dan Wood
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 25, 2020
Hiking

The description of this trail is wrong compared to the highlighted map. The hike from M20 up to Nichols Lake is more like 14 miles one-way, not 4.3. The highlighted trail shown goes south from M20, whereas, to go to Nichols Lake you have to go north of M20.

Uncle Kenny
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarNovember 24, 2019

nice walk

James Jagodzinski
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 30, 2019
Hiking

North Country Trail 5.0 mile 9-30-19. M-20 Trailhead. Manistee National Forest.

View James's Recording
Aaron Petit
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 3, 2019
Hiking

Very pretty, flat trail. A little bit of everything! Grass, sand, lots of caterpillars, some big pines. Only issue is that there's no good way to tell when to turn back. Have to pay attention to the map. Otherwise, wonderful trail!

Subhi Saadeh
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 31, 2019
HikingBugs

Awesome trail! Took us about 1.5 hours for there and back! Don’t forget the bug spray. Only saw one other couple there.

View Subhi's Recording
Oscar Hester
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 1, 2019
BackpackingBugs

It is beautiful. It is easy to keep track of the trail and has lots of nature. I stayed at a beautiful spot in in a clearing which had a lot space hang our hammocks. I recommend this trail to anyone who loves nature.

Matt Hiatt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 26, 2018
Hiking

Was a nice well traveled with some grooming trail. Would have been better if they could have created a loop. We came back on an atv trail just to get a different view. There is definitely some wildlife based on tracks on the trail but we did not see any which would also have made it better. Large portions of the trail are shaded with a few clearings but it helped break up the scenery. Was impressed with the stands of pine that were planted in rows at some point in history.

Misty Bischoff
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 14, 2017
Hiking

love this trail

Stevi Riel
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 4, 2017

This is SUCH a gorgeous hike. I wish it was a loop but it was so enjoyable I didn't mind seeing everything twice. I especially loved the depression forest section!

Kevin Boos
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 13, 2014
Hiking

This trail is fairly decent. Well maintained, very easy to follow, and somewhat scenic (4 stars because it's a bit repetitive). I wouldn't really consider it a loop, but you can make part of it into a loop if you do what I did. I started at the Michigan 20 Trailhead (1299 W 1 Mile Road, or at GPS Coords 43.568188,-85.827278) and went over to Diamond Lake Campgrounds, which was about 1.5 mi off the trail (7 mi hiking). I spent Friday night there, and then on Saturday morning took the Birch Grove Trail up to Loda Lake, where it rejoins the North Country Trail. I went up to Nichols Lake, had lunch, and then hiked back to Bear Creek to set up camp near the trail (very nice spot for dispersed camping). Saturday was about 20 miles. Then on Sunday I hiked back about 12 miles to the Michigan 20 trailhead. In total, the route I took was about 38-40 miles, completed in 44 hours (including sleeping). In general, water availability was pretty good, and the weather was perfect (60 deg at night, 80 deg daytime). Most of the trail is dense forest, so shade is abundant. There were some mosquitos, but applying DEET every 4 hours kept them at bay, no problem at all. I literally saw one other backpacker group the entire weekend, so the trail doesn't see much use despite being very nice. The best maps I found were the US Forest Service's 2013 map and the ArcGIS map.

Ryan Brown
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarDecember 18, 2012
Camping
First to Review

Well kept trail in northern lower penisula michigan. Blue markers lead the way. Lots of good camping spots but not alot of fresh water unfortunately (unless its early season). Dogs are allowed and no permit is required for using the trail. This trail is perfect for beginners or anyone who just wants to get away from it all and get lost in some beautiful michigan woods. Trail is kept by the north county trail association.

Geoff Budde
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 6, 2020
Hiking
View Geoff's Recording
Conor Dietrich
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 25, 2020
Hiking
View Conor's Recording
Gary Morley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 11, 2020
Hiking
View Gary's Recording
Tammy Chartier
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 8, 2020
Hiking
View Tammy's Recording
Cody Staup
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 6, 2020
Tre Biv
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 3, 2020
Hiking
View Tre's Recording
Stef Miller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 26, 2020
Walking
View Stef's Recording
Rich Van Til
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 15, 2020
Hiking
View Rich's Recording
David Zelenak
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 13, 2020
Hiking
View David's Recording
Donna Owen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 31, 2020
Hiking
View Donna's Recording
Steph Stump
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 24, 2020
Hiking
View Steph's Recording
Julie Sidlauskas
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 23, 2020
Hiking
View Julie's Recording
Melanie Quist
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 21, 2020
Hiking
View Melanie's Recording
Showing results 1 - 29 of 73