Lake St. Clair Metropark banding report - May 6-14, 2017 - Banding the first half of May had some challenges, and many rewards. The first day we planned to band, May 5, was rained out and on two days the park opene...
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Southern Lower Michigan Adventures
1. Warren Dunes State Park
"A beautiful park that is among the most popular in the entire Michigan system, Warren Dunes State Park is the southernmost jewel in a vast necklace of white sand dunes that adorn the Lower Peninsula's western shoreline."
Hang-gliding, hiking the dunes, x-country skiing, camping.
2. Waterloo-Pinckney Recreation Areas
"Southcentral Michigan's Pinckney and Waterloo state parks offer a wide range of outdoor recreation activities. Combined, the two parks encompass more than 30,000 acres of glacier-carved ridges, hardwood forest, lakes, and ponds that serve as an attractive playground for Lower Michigan anglers, backpackers, canoeists, mountain bikers, hunters, and equestrians."
Backpack the 35 mile Waterloo-Pinckney trail, dayhike, mountain bike the Potawatomi trail, canoe the "Chain of Lakes", horseback riding, x-country skiing, camping.
3. Huron-Clinton Metroparks
"The Huron-Clinton Metroparks comprise an immensely popular system that attracts all kinds of folks from Detroit's metropolitan area. Metropark visitors won't encounter elk roaming in sepia autumn fileds or black bears rooting around under vast canopies of green, but they will find an enormous array of scenic trails and waterways that are enjoyed by a large number of users during all four seasons." Nature trails, biking, canoeing the Huron River, camping.
1. Late Woodland Earthworks
Three miles north of the border and 7 miles west, "another horseshoe-shaped earthen enclosure was built about one thousand years ago." "This earthwork was on a low bluff overlooking water. A palisade of wood topped this earthwork in the upper reaches of the St. Joseph River."
2. Hunting Camp
A site on the Grand River south of Lansing seems to have been used as a winter hunting camp, as many of the stone artifacts were projectile points, and 89 percent of the abundant animal bones were from deer and other mammals." Late Woodland peoples.
"Lansing was built in a basically flat area supporting lots of marshes, bogs, and boggy ponds." Habitats for: salamanders, wood frogs, green frogs, Blanding's turtles, painted turtles, and snapping turtles. Remains of extinct Ice Age mammoths, mastodonts, and giant beavers were found near small bog ponds.
4. Nineteenth-Century Settlement
"A centennial farm (occupied by the same family for over one hundred years) near Lansing gave Michigan State University archeologists an opportunity to study the material record of settlement in this area."
5. Plank Roads
"An indication of the difficulties of transportation during the early years of Michigan's statehood came to light when road construction workers in East Lansing unearthed portions of a plank road that had been covered by several episodes of paving. Plank roads were popular in the middle of the nineteenth century. These roads were made of local lumber and were operated by private companies." Grand River Avenue, E. Lansing.