Spring in Pure Lewiston
Spring is the perfect season to visit Lewiston, Michigan. Most of us have cabin fever after a long cold winter, and the thought of getting outdoors is very appealing. That is especially true if you enjoy a walk in the woods in northern Michigan. The forests of Michigan offer a beautiful and bountiful opportunity for those who forage for the uniquely delicious morel mushroom. From early May until early June, Michigan wildflowers are a sight to behold. The observant hiker will find Dutchman's Breeches, Pink Lady Slippers, Jack in the Pulpit, Trout Lilies, and an abundance of white Trillium in the Lewiston area. At the same time that these beautiful wildflowers are coming up, so too, are the morel mushrooms. First pops-up the black morel in early to mid May, then the blonde (also called white morel), usually late May to early June. There are ample locations to explore on state land that is open to hikers. North of Lewiston, for example, are the Pigeon River State Forest and the Atlanta State Forest. The Michigan state map shows many other areas near Lewiston that are open to hikers.
Take a Day Trip to Mio's Amish/Mennonite Country
Amish/Mennonite country located about 3 miles north of Mio on M-33, Kittle Road and the surrounding area. This day trip offers Lewiston visitors the chance to get out of the woods and view beautiful rolling farmland. There are several stores to visit that provide shoppers with just about everything needed. Listed below are some of the more popular stores. However, watch for other little shops along the way.
Pack up your old kit bag, as the old song says, and set out on a hike. From Lewiston, try the Avery Hills around Avery Lake. Each hill and valley gives you new views of hardwood forests, wildflowers, berry bushes and wildlife. Another hiking area is north of Lewiston, called Rattlesnake Hills. (Don't worry, any real rattlesnakes are few, and will usually hide before you get close.) Take water, cell phone, a map and a bit of emergency supplies, just in case. There is plenty of public land in the area, so there's no need to trespass on private land.
For the experienced hiker, the High Country Pathway crosses the county. Michigan DNR offices have maps, and it is a trail through the Pigeon River State Forest, and through elk country to Clear Lake State Park.
A good time to visit is Mother's Day weekend, because the Lewiston Chamber of Commerce holds its annual Morel Mushroom Festival on Saturday of that weekend. So come up and enjoy the fun of exploring the northern Michigan woods, with the opportunity to add the exquisite taste of the morel to your next meal.(Although the morel mushroom is one of the easiest edible mushrooms to identify, first time hunters should go with an experienced morel hunter to ensure correct identification.)
ORV & ATV Riding
There are a number of trails in the area for off-road and all-terrain vehicles. The Michigan Cross Country Cycle Trail runs through the area, and many trails connect to that. Near Lewiston, the Avery Hills trail is popular. West of Lewiston, of Old State Road, the Crapo Creek trail offers a loop ride. South of Lewiston, trails connect with Mio and Grayling. Trails are color-coded with small triangles, some for trail motorcycles only, some for four-wheeled vehicles, and some for mixed traffic, including four-wheel drive full size trucks. For safety, know the system and check the maps available at DNR offices and on the internet. Try www.fishweb.com/recreation/orv/maps or michigan.gov/dnr or michigantrails.us.
Other areas of interest include:
Avery Lake State Forest
Avery Lake State Forest encompasses most of the northeastern portion of Albert Township. Available activities include fishing, swimming, and boating on Avery Lake, snowmobile trails, and camping in two separate locations within the forest. Hunting is permitted in much of the forest. It is rustic in nature. Size: 30 acres
Little Wolf Lake State Forest
Little Wolf Lake State Forest is the smallest of the three state forests in Albert Township. Located southeast of the Lewiston community, Little Wolf Lake also offers camping and lake-based recreation, including fishing and swimming. Little Wolf Lake is more developed than its sister forests, with more man-made features and a prohibition on hunting. A small portion of the forest is accessible to persons with disabilities. Little Wolf Lake offers camping for tents and campers shorter than 40 feet. Size: 8 Acres
Buttles Road MDNR Facilities
Located along Buttles Road, these state-maintained nature trails are popular for hiking and cross-country skiing, depending on the season. The unpaved trails run through undisturbed natural areas, but do not connect directly to Buttles Park or the core downtown Area.
Size: 6 miles of trails
Sage Lake Flooding Area
The Sage Lake Flooding Area is a natural open space area along Sage Lake, in the far eastern portion of the Township. It provides an opportunity for passive recreation along the side of the lake, which is difficult to reach in other places. Size: Less than 1 acre
CCC Camp Lunden
Camp Lunden is a historic site located within Albert Township which was used during the 1930's by the Civilian Conservation Corps, a "New Deal" jobs program. There are many similar sites throughout Northern Michigan. However at this site, notably the workers landscaped an earthen scale model of the State of Michigan in front of their barracks. The dug out lakes--Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie and St. Clair --were fed by an artesian well and stocked with fish. Size: Less than 5 acres
The beauty of the north's forests, lakes and streams are great opportunities for photographers.
There's nothing like a winter day after a morning frost, when everything is sparkling white! Summer sunsets and blue lakes and skies can be breathtaking in the viewfinder. And an autumn ride through our hardwoods are rich in yellows, oranges and reds, contrasting with the dark green pines. Springtime is for young wildlife: spotted young fawns, nesting birds and all sorts of small critters.
Michigan's elk herd is generally centered in a square bounded by I-75 on the west, M-68 on the north, M-33 on the east and M-32 on the south. Exploring at dawn or before dusk, checking the wildlife openings, rye fields, in the back country will give you a chance to photograph these huge majestic animals.
Dreaming of catching some trout? It doesn't matter if you like trolling spoons, bait casting, spin casting or the quiet solitude of fly fishing, the Lewiston area offers a variety of waters to suit your style. Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout, Cutthroat Trout or Brook Trout can be found in Sage Lake, McCormick Lake, Avery Lake or Big Bear Lake. Some of the area creeks holding these beauties are Gilchrist Creek, Crooked Creek and Hunt Creek (below the Fisheries Research Center). And, if you choose to travel a little farther from town, you will find world class trout fishing on the AuSable River. Wake up, grab your gear and head to Lewiston for the chance to catch that trophy fish you've been dreaming of!