Today’s adventure chronicle will be continuing our ongoing mission… To find new nature and seek out new trees.. Takes us to Pinckney State Recreation Area. This beautiful Michigan State Park spans two counties and several townships within Southeast Michigan. In Washtenaw County, the park rests in Dexter, Sylvan, and Lyndon Townships. In the Livingston County areas, there are parts of the park Putnam and Unadilla Townships. As you can imagine, this is a rather large area. 11,000 acres to be precise. We began our exploration of this park earlier this spring with the Losee Lake Trail.
The Losee Lake Trail at Pinckney State Recreation Area
At the time of our visit, Jess wasn’t feeling super well, so we decided on attempting to finish one of the shorter trail loops we were able to find. Our journey began, consequently, at the parking area near Silver Lake. There is a short “there and back” into the loop, at which the trail splits to loop around a beautiful wooded area. If you haven’t seen a map, you’ll find that the trail does not loop around Losee Lake but rather converges with it on the North East section of the loop. The opposite side of the loop runs somewhat parallel to Silver Hill Road for a bit before crossing Dexter-Townhall Road and leading into the more secluded interior of this beautiful spot.
If you have a map of this particular trail, our route followed the markers in this sequence: 1 > 2 > 3 > 4 > 5 > 6 > 2 > 1. Due to circumstances, we didn’t go through the entire loop but used the cut-through from marker 4 > 5. We will return for a full circuit soon, however, so we can finish our report on this trail.
Beautiful right from the start!
As soon as you make your way from the parking lot, you have to trek a short jaunt southeast to make your way to the trail-head. It looks like a little groomed picnic area at first. We wondered if we were in the right place. Continuing our walk, paid off as we did manage to find the trail. The beginning of the journey, looks like this:
Pine trees greet you right away.
The date of this trek was May 1st. The forest was just coming back to life. The smells of spring were mingling nicely with the wafting scents of the decaying leaves along the forest floor. As we made our way toward marker 2, we were greeted by this little flower.
Pet Friendly State Parks
As owners of two very avid adventure puppies, we do our best to avoid areas that do not allow dogs. The Pinckney State Recreation Area is no different. Anoush and Duncan, are our trail sentinels. Just below, you can see them guarding the trail marker #3 just at the “Blue Spur”. This is the last marker before you reach the intersection with Dexter-Townhall Road and the subsequent pipeline that I’ve read quite a bit about in the Alltrails Reviews for this hike.
The Collie adventure pups, Anoush & Duncan
The Rover Gas Pipeline
While I definitely don’t enjoy seeing man-made intrusion into nature. I often will take up the challenge of making an interesting image to incorporate nature with the man-made elements.
Near the pipeline site, before you get back into the trail, nature is already at work reclaiming what she can. This is a bit of Sumac that is growing into the area that had only two years before been clear cut.
Before we headed back into the woods, we stopped for a quick portrait with our puppers.
Spring in the forest is always full of such vivid little bits of life. One such example is this small maple tree. Hurrying to grab as much light before the bigger siblings grow leaves and block most of the light.
The Pines at Pinckney State Recreation Area
Since Jess wasn’t feeling well, I often resisted the urge to stop and take photos. However, I love the “down the trail” photos. So I did take another quick stab at the pine-tree lined path leading back to the parking area.
Sunsets are always a welcomed sight.
The first shot is actually facing away from the sunset. I took this approach for a couple reasons. First being, the light was so soft and yet colorful over Silver Lake. The second was that the sun was setting over the parking lot. As with all sunsets, there is a small window of opportunity. So I wanted to attempt to capture the scene the I knew would fade into dark sooner. The first shot is a long exposure. This reduced the intensity of the sky but, gave the water a very warm glow.
The next shot shows just how crazy the colors were. Even facing away from the sun, there was a very strong pinkish orange plume of color on the clouds.
The final shot of the trip was the ever scenic parking lot. The sun was behind the treeline at this point but, was still blasting so much color onto the light cloud cover.