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Sharon Hills Nature Preserve Loop

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Sharon Hills Nature Preserve

Sharon Hills Nature Preserve Loop is a 1.2 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Manchester, Michigan that features beautiful wild flowers. The trail is rated as moderate and offers a number of activity options. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 1.2 miles Elevation Gain: 91 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

cross country skiing

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

snowshoeing

walking

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

In 2000, Legacy Land Conservancy accepted the gift of 67 acres of oak-hickory forest, kettle wetlands, and tiny remnant prairie in Sharon Township, seven miles north of Manchester. Located on the western edge of the rolling Sharon Short Hills, this preserve is characterized by its geology. It is an “end moraine” in the locally important geological formation, the Jackson interlobate area, and marks the maximum advance of the last glacier. This geology was formed between three glacial lobes 13,000 to 16,000 years ago. Because of poor, easily eroding soils, for many years the majority of Sharon Hills was used as grazing land for cattle instead of being clear cut to grow crops. It now contains a range of habitats including a prairie remnant, meadows, wetland, shrub swamp, and mixed oak forest. Although the preserve is heavily infested with invasive species, controlled burns and manual removal are slowly making progress toward restoration of this interesting property. From the parking lot, the outer loop, Tolen Trail, is a good mile hike with various trails leading off the exterior loop making 2.2 miles of trail in total. It's recommended that you take a copy of the trails map with you when you walk, as the winding trails and convoluted land forms can be confusing. This is the only Legacy preserve where horseback riding and falconry (with a permit) are allowed.

hiking
7 months ago

Very good trail conditions watch for deer Turkey and squirrels

hiking
Mon May 20 2019

Was in the area, so stopped by for a very short hike as the preserve greens up. Pics are geo-tagged and on https://johnmetzler.smugmug.com/Parks/Legacy-Land-Conservancy-Preserves/Sharon-Hills-Preserve/.

Nice little park, with some enjoyable elevation changes (I had 174 feet in 2.2miles). Came out in the early spring to get some shots showing the topography, before it is all hidden by greenery. Legacy Land Conservation does a good job with keeping much of the invasive plants at bay. I'll probably come back as it greens up. I surprised some deer, there were a pair of ducks and a pair of geese on the very small pond. The trails are in good shape, with most having blazes on trees but no other markings; there were maps at the entrance, but I still missed at least one intersection. My pictures are geo-tagged to my recording. Higher resolution versions and a few extra shots are at https://johnmetzler.smugmug.com/Parks/Legacy-Land-Conservancy-Preserves/Sharon-Hills-Preserve/.

hiking
Mon Oct 08 2018

Great little area with just over 2 miles of trails managed by the Legacy Land Conservancy. Mostly wooded and very secluded - deer, turkey and lots of smaller wildlife abound. Dog-friendly as well. Because of its morain topography the hills are a little steep, but not too difficult. Peaceful little corner of Washtenaw!

hiking
15 days ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

hiking
7 months ago