Sturgeon Bay Dunes
Addition to Wilderness State Park (Assist Project)
Size: 750 acres
Frontage: 4,100 feet on Lake Michigan
Land Description: Unquestionably one of the most beloved public beaches in northwestern Lower Michigan.
Trails: A township park is at the center of the property’s length where a turnaround is available. Roadside parking is also available providing shoreline access. The North Country Trail runs through the back dunes of the park.
History: In 1991, Sand Products Corporation sold this one-of-a-kind property to the State of Michigan, adding significant and much desired acreage to Wilderness State Park. The property includes habitat for the endangered Piping Plover and four threatened species of plants (Lake Huron Tansy, Pitcher’s Thistle, Pumpell’s Bromegrass and Houghton’s Goldenrod). The acquisition was a grassroots effort mobilized in the 1970s largely by Kathy Bricker (first LTC board chair) and Conservancy co-founder John Tanton. Their group proposed expansion of the boundaries of Wilderness State Park to include the land. Others involved in the dune protection included The Nature Conservancy-Michigan chapter, Petoskey Regional Audubon Society, Michigan and Petoskey Garden Clubs, Trout Unlimited, Save Our Bay, Ducks Unlimited, and countless other individuals.
Directions: From Cross Village, follow M-119 north along the coast approximately 5 miles until it dead ends at Sturgeon Bay Trail. Turn left and you will soon be at public shoreline.