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Potawatomi Trail

 4.6 (20)
Trail Mapped Wrong?

Length

17.5 Miles 28.1 Kilometers


Elevation

787' 240 m

Ascent

-783' -239 m

Descent

2%

Avg Grade (1°)

9%

Max Grade (5°)

995' 303 m

High

883' 269 m

Low

Conditions


All Clear 53 days ago
Mostly Dry - Just a little mud on the north side. History

Getting forecast...

A classic SE Michigan loop that makes for a beautiful hike.

Dylan Graves

Overview [Suggest Changes]

No camping along the trail except at the Blind Lake backpacker campground. Use caution during hunting season even though there are no closure dates or anything like that. The trail just closes whenever the park does (typically between dusk and dawn).
The Potawatomi Trail is a real classic in Southeast Michigan, one of the longest and oldest loops in the area. A lot of mountain bikers use it, but it is still pedestrian friendly. I'd suggest going counter-clockwise in order to avoid hiking in the same direction as the bikers.
Features: Fall Colors — Lake — River/Creek — Views — Wildlife [Add/Remove]
Family Friendly: It's a long loop, but if you just want to take this in sections, the terrain is pretty easy for dogs, families, etc.
Dogs: Leashed

Description [Suggest Changes]

The trailhead is pretty hard to miss, just before the large parking lot at the Silver Lake swimming access. Once on the trail, you'll immediately ascend a small hill and cross a road. At the first junction, keep left (right takes you along the Silver Lake Trail).

All the other junctions are pretty hard to get confused. The trail is well-marked, with distance markers every quarter mile or so. Use the Hiking Project mobile app if you're confused. You can also shave off a little more than two miles if you take the Potawatomi Shortcut Trail north of Halfmoon Lake.

It is a very scenic trail with lots of views and variety. It is rolling through glacial hills and moraines, and there are some obvious eskers and erratics throughout the hike. There are lots of lakes and some streams as well. All water crossings have wooden bridges across them, so you shouldn't get wet, unless it is a particularly muddy time of year. It makes for a great winter hike, too!

Flora & Fauna [Suggest Changes]

Typical recovering Michigan deciduous forest, with maples, oaks and hickories dominating. Some pines as well.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Jun 17, 2018
Duncan K
Jun 16, 2018
Duncan K
14mi
May 6, 2018
Katie Wren-Keyandwy
Took two shortcuts, rested a couple of times, gave our pup water, took some photos, took our time. It was great! 12.5mi
Apr 13, 2018
Tracy Kincaid
12mi
Apr 13, 2018
Kevin Kirkland
12mi
Apr 2, 2018
Chris Janes
Long hike for a damaged old guy. Great time though. 1 wrong turn because of some poor signage added a couple miles to the day. No biggie. 19.5mi — 8h 00m
Oct 29, 2017
Catie Mackenzie
I think we're close.
Oct 28, 2017
Chirag Birla
6mi

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 20 votes

#175

Overall
  4.6 from 20 votes
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60%
4 Star
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1 Star
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Rankings

#2

in Michigan

#175

Overall
717 Views Last Month
7,917 Since May 16, 2015
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