Maxton Plains Nature Area

The pieces of state-owned land that are proposed as natural area are intermixed with pieces of land that form The Nature Conservancy's Maxton Plains Preserve, all together creating a much larger, contiguous natural area that encompasses a large portion of the existing alvar. The natural community in the area has a very unusual biology, which is derived largely from the unusual geological condition and history of the site. It is a relatively undisturbed example of one of the rarest natural communities in Michigan, known as "alvar." Alvar occurs in areas where all of the soils have been scraped away by wind, water and ice, leaving the 400 million year old limestone bedrock exposed. These areas are typically treeless, the vegetation dominated by grasses, sedges and herbs that grow in cracks within the bedrock, or in a very thin soil layer over the bedrock. To some, it may look like an abandoned parking lot with weeds growing in the pavement cracks, but the life that flourishes in alvar areas is abundant and special. 2,017 acres in the northern part of Drummond Island.

Maxton Plains

Contact Information


Drummond Island, MI 49726

Driving Directions

Phone: (800) 737-8666


Location of Maxton Plains Nature Area

Map of Michigan

Drummond Island Weather

CLOUDY, humidity 77%, barometer 30.00,
wind 5 mph NNE
Clouds and sun, a shower or two; chilly
46°F | 31°F
Clouds and sun, a shower or two; chilly
Plenty of sun
48°F | 34°F
Plenty of sun
Sunshine mixing with clouds
52°F | 40°F
Sunshine mixing with clouds
Clouds and limited sun
54°F | 45°F
Clouds and limited sun
Clouds and sun with a shower; breezy
57°F | 44°F
Clouds and sun with a shower; breezy

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