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Contact: Lisa Myers, 231-326-5134
National Park Rangers at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore are pleased to announce a collection of different hikes to entice you to join them this month. Adventure-filled Saturday afternoons will have you measuring a champion tree, designing a seed, visiting a steamship town or getting ready for Halloween by visiting Devil’s Hole. There is no better time to get out and enjoy the Lakeshore than October. The cool, fall air is invigorating. The hills are splashed with a palate of color. And the sun streaming through a cloudy sky is a spotlight on a distant lighthouse.
Park rangers look forward to sharing some of their favorite subjects and special places around the Lakeshore with you. Each Saturday, the programs always start at the VisitorCenter in Empire on Highway M-72 at 1:00 p.m. Then, after a brief introduction and explanation, the group will drive a short distance to a trailhead.
Oct. 7 - Champion Trees in Living Color – Learn about the park’s champion trees and how to find them. Your journey by car caravan includes visits to a few of the giants, including a national champion. Each tree will greet you in its favorite fall colors. You will get a chance to use a tree key and measure some near champions. You will see that a host of plants and animals make their homes in these massive structures.
Oct. 14 - Fall Seeds and Berries – The flowers have all gone, but their beauty lives on in their seed and berries. Learn about the perils the seeds of our favorite wildflowers must survive if they are to become flowers again. If you could design the ideal seed, what would it look like?
Oct. 21 - Glen Haven: Capital of D.H. Day’s Empire (Assisted listening special program)
Glen Haven was once a major stop for steamships. Tour this historic village and learn of its importance to Great Lakes shipping and the local community. A ranger will open up the general store, blacksmith shop, boat museum and Sleeping Bear Inn for peaks into the past. This program will also feature the assisted listening devise regularly available at the Lakeshore, some of the latest technology in this field. Those with hearing loss are especially encouraged to attend.
Oct. 28 – Devil’s Hole and it Haunted History – Is Devil’s Hole just a big opening in the sand dune? Every hike to this isolated spot on the dunes is an eerie experience, but even more so if you know its legends. Could it really be connected to the great Chicago fire of 1871? Hike to Devil’s Hole and hear its stories if you dare.Saturday at the Lakeshore hikes are free, suitable for all ages and last two hours including the introduction at the VisitorCenter and the drive to the trail. No reservations are needed; participants need only purchase the park entrance pass to join in the fun ($10/vehicle valid for seven days or $20/vehicle for an entire year). Programs will not be offered in November and December. Snowshoe walks begin in January. For more information about these or other ranger-led programs and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore activities, please call the VisitorCenter at 231-326-5134.