Click for Ann Arbor, Michigan Forecast
Wednesday February 22, 2017
Follow us: facebook twitter RSS feed
>> >> City Guide >> Recreation >> Riverfront Parks

City Guide

Riverfront Parks

Smoking is banned in all Ann Arbor city parks with the exception of Cobblestone Farm and the Huron Hills and Leslie Park golf courses. For an indexed Google map of all Ann Arbor parks, see

Riverfront Parks

Ann Arbor boasts several miles of diverse parks along the Huron River. Connected by trails, they provide the perfect setting for a long scenic walk or bike ride, as well as the chance to stop and enjoy activities ranging from bird watching and fishing to disc golf and swimming. Here's an overview, downstream from northwest to southeast.

Located on the northwest side of town, the Bird Hills Nature Area is the city's largest park, a favorite of hikers for its unpaved wooded trails through steep hills and ravines. To the east, across the river and Huron River Drive, the low-lying Barton Nature Area contains several different ecosystems, including prairie, emergent marshland, wet meadows, and former farmlands, and is home to the century-old Barton Dam. To the east stretches Bandemer Park, frequented by many for its 9-hole disc golf course, dirt bike jump course, and views of Argo Pond. The pond is circled by a trail connecting Bandemer Park with Argo Park to the east. A pedestrian boardwalk and then a dirt trail follow the eastern shoreline south through dense willows and oaks to the Argo watersports livery off Longshore Dr. On the west side of the pond, the paved Border-to-Border Trail (B2B) runs from Bandemer to Argo Dam and follows the Huron River all the way to Ypsilanti. A recent addition to Argo Park, the wildly popular Argo Cascades is a bypass channel featuring a series of nine narrow drops and pools that carry paddlers and inner-tubers from Argo Pond down to the main river just upstream of the Broadway Bridges.

The B2B Trail goes under the bridges and passes through the picturesque Riverside Park, located on a relatively shallow portion of river suitable for fly-fishing. Downstream, off Maiden Lane, there are many inviting outdoor tables, grills, and a stunning Greek Revival picnic shelter at Island Park. In the woods at the back of the park, an old dirt road, now a walking path, ascends to the Cedar Bend Nature Area, a high, forested slope (also accessible from Broadway via Cedar Bend Dr.) whose view of the city's skyline is partially obscured by oaks and hickories.

Across the river from Island Park, Fuller Park bustles with people playing on its soccer fields, large playground, and in its outdoor pool and water slide. From here, the B2B Trail runs east along Fuller Rd. and around the U-M's Mitchell Field and softball diamonds, leading to Gallup Park. The city's most popular park, it has two playgrounds, a canoe and paddleboat livery, and over 3 miles of bucolic trails and arched footbridges joining a series of small islands. A pedestrian walkway connects Gallup with its quiet neighbor to the west, the Furstenberg Nature Area. The most ecologically diverse park in Ann Arbor, it contains several rare species of flora native to wetlands, woodlands, prairie, and oak savanna.

Teeming with roller bladers, joggers, and cyclists, the B2B Trail continues from Gallup Park east to Parker Mill County Park, where there is a historic grist and cider mill, and then Forest Nature Area, a wet forest of black maples, hackberries, and rock elms traversed by a boardwalk trail with interpretative signs.

You might also like:

My Very Own Vacation: My Neighborhood My Very Own Vacation: My Neighborhood
Ann Arbor Special Services Ann Arbor Special Services
Photo: Agree to Disagree Photo: Agree to Disagree
The Sale of Maynard House - The Grand Budapest ... The Sale of Maynard House - The Grand Budapest ...
Map of Restaurants with Catering Available Map of Restaurants with Catering Available
Bob Bob
Map of Restaurants that accept Mastercard Map of Restaurants that accept Mastercard
Parking Squeeze - The city wants downtown parki... Parking Squeeze - The city wants downtown parki...
Calendar This Week - Films Calendar This Week - Films
Collage Concert - A stunning crazy quilt Collage Concert - A stunning crazy quilt
Community School of Ballet
You might
also like:
drawing of Avalon Cafe and Kitchen Avalon Café and Kitchen
Bread is only the beginning.

Dave Douglas with trumpet Dave Douglas
The versatility of the long-distance trumpeter

the sky over the Huron River Parker to Gallup and Back Again
A good winter river walk

Kay Kendall and husband Rudy Haertl Kay Kendall and Rudy Haertl
Septuagenarian sweethearts