Explore the most popular trails near Maple City with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Maple City, Michigan Map

This is gorgeous trail!! It was slightly challenging as there were a lot of steep inclines, and I was carrying a baby. The trail was very well labeled, and it's a great workout! Definitely a recommendation to other hikers, and I look forward to going back.

Great fun. Different loops so you can do as little or as much as you’d like. This trail takes you through varied landscapes and fauna.

Amazing views.

Beautiful trail. Inclines for half a mile to the Point; lovely stands of birch and wild columbine in May. Once out on the dunes, the views are amazing. After the Point, trail dips back into the woods and spits out on even more incredible duneage, covered with sand cherry shrubs and moss. Unfortunately, I somehow managed to connect myself with the neighboring trail at Hidden Lake and got lost - had to backtrack and found people who were kind enough to drive me back to the trailhead. Definitely study the map before heading out, is my advice, because getting back up the dune from the adjacent trail would have been murder.

1 month ago

If you are looking for a trail in Sleeping Bear Dunes that isn’t all sand and dune trails, this is a perfect choice. There is a parking lot right at the trailhead and the trail is well marked and easy to find. This trail includes deep woods, open dunes, spectacular dune cliffside views of Lake Michigan, open meadows, and a lot of elevation change. I’d say the difficulty level is moderate, in Michigan trail standards at least.

Great view at the lookout (0.6)!

1 month ago

This trip was as good as it gets. Trail was well maintained, getting water is very easy being that your on a island. Did this loop ten days ago and didnt pull out the bug spray once. Gorgeous views every night at camp, the best part is once you are off the boat and on the trail you dont run into anyone. I would highly recommend backpacking the NMI loop.

If you are looking to spend time in the sleeping bear dunes area with some degree of seclusion, this is the place for you! Four days was just enough time to hike the trail and enjoy all there is to offer from the island. The other reviews stand true and cover most of the bases. I highly recommend NMI!

Due to time and others we just went out and back, was a nice short hike the incline might be a little more strenuous for some people.

2 months ago

Awesome trip! We stayed 2 nights. Our favorite part was hiking to the west Side of the island near crescent dock and camping there the first night. The sunset was unbelievably beautiful and being on the beach was awesome. You won’t be alone though. There were about 14 others around. The night sky was filled with stars.

Other things to note:
- Black flies were biting on the beach.
- trip cost about $100 for Park and ferry passes and parking.
- ferry took about 90min one way

2 months ago

Nice easy climb up to the point, absolutely spectacular view, sat a while, then confused by the complete lack of signage decided just to double-back rather than descend a narrow, seemingly risky, unmarked path. Could use some better info there. Otherwise still well worth the single route up and back.

2 months ago

Beautiful throughout the entire 3+ miles. Amazing views at the point. The entire hike was awesome!

2 months ago

Hiked this last week. We just went to the bluff and then back. Incline all the way to bluff. View was awesome! You can see North Manitou Island and North Manitou Shoal Lighthouse. Definitely worth the walk.

Really good place to go. Mosquitoes are difficult to deal with. The chipmunks are very good at stealing food. The scenery is nice. The trails are nice. Good camping spots along the beach. Overall loved it.

3 months ago

Beautiful wildflower walk and views at the point - perfect family outing

3 months ago

Gorgeous early morning hike with my Aussie! Really humid and some flies along the lakeshore, but other than that couldn’t ask for a better start to our day.

My Fiancé and I had such fun on this hike today! It was absolutely beautiful and had awesome terrain. Definitely a good work out and perfect for a short day hike.

4 months ago

Really nice place to get away!!

The ferry took about 2.5 hours to go from Leland to South Manitou to North Manitou. Check in with the ranger when you get there and listen to what they have to say. Other than that, you’re free to do whatever basically. We went to the south side of the island and did about 8 mi through the woods, stopping at the beach. It wasn’t too thrilling in terms of scenery, though we heard the north side had a lot of cooler things to see and more elevation changes.
Other things to be aware of:
-(If the right season) There will be mosquitoes and lots of them, especially around the lakes,beach, and dock (much less so in the woods). Afterbite and Cortisone is your friend.
- Also, ticks. Tweezers.
- Lotsa lotsa poison ivy, as someone else mentioned. Only the main trails are cleared from it.
- You probably don’t need trekking poles unless you really like carrying them around or need them.
- Cell service is real spotty.
- Do not miss the ferry, they will leave you.
- Be sure to actually read the rules in the website and take food/provisions for an extra 2 days at least. If the weather does get bad, the ferry will not come. The ranger gave a nice horror story about it not coming once for an extra three days.
Overall, it was a really good time, and I would go back.

Did north loop on a snowy Saturday.
Snow shin deep.
Look out point was gorgeous. Trail marking non existent once you get out of the woods, at back part of loop. Ended up walking 1.1 miles on road to get back to trail head parking lot, after a # of attempts to get there via trail.

Map obtained at trailhead lot was worthless.

6 months ago

Not sure how this trail isn't ranked higher. Perfect hiking trip with a scenic payoff.

Really pretty views. We were there in late March and didn’t know what to expect. Ended up catching a sunny say and ended up pleasantly surprised by a fantastic view of a wintey/spring-mixed Lake Michigan!

7 months ago

One of the best views you'll see of Lake Michigan. The Dune puts you 260 feet almost straight above the lapping waters of Lake Michigan. The lookout point is about 0.6 miles from the trailhead. The .6 mile hike will be tough to some since it's a pretty good incline. However, the trail does offer wooden steps which makes it easier and there's no need to rush. relax and enjoy the quit and peaceful nature and when you get to the top, you'll be thankful that you made the hike. Check out the video I shot, video was shot on my GoPro Hero 4 sessions. https://youtu.be/gtxLWxdoV3k

alot of fun in winter great hike kids love the loop

8 months ago

Spectacular views, trails well maintained.

9 months ago

This was quick and pretty cool.

Fun hike with the kids. More than manageable outside of them wanting to continually go up and down the narrow steep dune hike to a beautiful overlook!

Friday, September 01, 2017

Spectacular piece of wilderness in northern Michigan! My girlfriend and I had a couple of extra days on vacation and decided to go on a backpacking trip. We booked a seat on the ferry from Leland to the island and paid our backcountry camping fees the day we left. The island is huge and the trails are well-maintained for the most part. If you want to break off of the main trails, there are numerous"unmaintained" trails that you can follow, but definitely bring a map and compass as these are easy to get lost on. It's relatively easy terrain without a ton of elevation gain, and the soft/sandy soil is easy on the knees and ankles even after long distances. The wildlife is beautiful and you're almost certain to see deer and a huge variety of birds.

We went from Sunday to Tuesday in late August, so we were nearly alone on the island and only encountered a couple of other hikers.

Camping on the island is excellent, but you can only have campfires in the designated campground. If you camp in the backcountry like I did, you cannot have a campfire and will be restricted to using your stove for cooking and lanterns/lamps for light. That said, the backcountry campsites I used were excellent. If you camp near the shore of Lake Michigan you can hear waves crash on the beach as you bed down for the night. If you stay more inland, be prepared for nearly absolute silence in the woods, broken only by the calls of owls and other nocturnal creatures.

A word of warning: The island is infested with poison ivy. It is literally everywhere you go. If you plan on camping in the backcountry be sure to pack alcohol swabs or some other anti-poison ivy product to clean yourself off every few hours. It's a miracle my girlfriend and I didn't get rashes. Additionally, bring first aid tools and extra provisions. The ferry takes about an hour to get to the island, and the nearest hospital is in Traverse City, so be prepared for emergency. The beauty and remoteness of this wilderness area make it one of my favorites in all of the Midwest.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Our family of 4 spent 3 nights backpacking on NMI, part of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. To reach the island, you must take the ferry that leaves from Leland. The staff there will issue your backcountry permit. Once you are in the island, a ranger gives you a brief talk and then you are free to go wherever you would like. We spent the first night at Lake Manitou. Smallmouth bass fishing is excellent. The fishermen waded in and used a top-water technique. You can keep one per license per day. The second night we camped at Crescent City on the west shore. A little tricky to find the right path to the beach, but just keep trying if you hit a dead end. Beautiful sunset. Last night we camped on the east side of island near the South Cherry Orchard. The backpacking is relatively easy- trails are wide and gently sloping. The centerline trail across the middle of the island is fast- so you could camp on the west side and still easily make it back to the boat the next day. I would recommend buying the $5 map rather than using the free park map. The bugs were manageable with Deet. Beware there are monster patches of poison ivy especially along the beaches. There is only one water spigot near the dock- otherwise you will need to filter. Not everyone has done a good job of digging their cat holes- which is kind of disgusting in some popular places. But, we rarely saw other hikers. The solitude was amazing. The beaches are gorgeous. And I was sad to leave. I would recommend this to everyone but especially to families with beginner backpackers.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

I would've rated this above Empire Bluff Trail, but it is more of a challenging hike! The hike to the lookout is where you gain a good chunk of your elevation. Gorgeous, gorgeous views & more secluded areas when its a highly trafficked day.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Great trail with beautiful views of the lake and manitou islands. Unique terrain with sand dune, meadow and forest. Would rate as easy

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