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A popular destination year-round for residents across the Detroit area, the Lake Erie Metropark offers a wide variety of activities and recreation sites across its 1600-plus acres. Nestled along the lakeshore where the Detroit River empties out into Lake Erie, the park features a three-mile paved trail that allows cyclists and pedestrians to explore the full extent of natural beauty on display, and forms a link in the Downriver Linked Greenways trail system, which allows you to travel all the way from Lake Erie up to the Lower Huron Metropark via trail.
Starting in the north, the trail heads south from the East-West Connector Trail and into the lovely wooded fields inside the park. Be sure to check out the Battle of Brownstown Memorial at the trail junction, which details a skirmish from the War of 1812 that went very poorly for the American side. The trail leads into the heart of the park, where athletic fields, a swimming pool, playgrounds, and other facilities are located, making it an excellent destination for some family fun. The Marshlands Museum & Nature Center, accessible via a separate paved pathway, gives you the option of adding some educational time to your recreational outing; birdwatchers will also want to make sure to bring their gear, as the park is renowned for its variety of waterfowl and hawks. The trail comes to an end at the entrance to the park's marina, offering gorgeous views of the lake and a great place to picnic. Cyclists and pedestrians entering the park are not charged a fee, but any vehicles must pay an entrance fee for admission. Whether you're just exploring the lakeshore for a while or wrapping up a journey from miles away up the Huron River, the Lake Erie Metropark Trail provides a pleasant path suitable for a variety of uses.
Parking is available within the metropark (with entrance fee); the main park entrance is located off of W Jefferson Avenue north of Huron River Drive. To reach the park from Interstate 75, take exit 27 in Rockwood and proceed east on Huron River Drive for several miles, then turn left onto W Jefferson Avenue - the park entrance will be on the right. Please note that the parking at the marina is reserved for those with a marina parking permit.
Additional parking may be available at the north end of the trail at Carlson High School; be sure to follow any posted parking signs and regulations.
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