Watkins Lake State Park and County Preserve
The park is jointly managed by Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission and the DNR.
Watkins Lake State Park and County Preserve is known for its quiet serenity, scenic lake, 5-mile walking trail, bird-watching opportunities and many other draws. The property features beautiful rolling land covered in a mixture of open meadow, mixed hardwoods, low wetland areas, open water and the property's most popular feature, Watkins Lake.
The park has significant historical value because Royal and Sally Carpenter Watkins, who first farmed the land, played a key role in the Underground Railroad.
Due to important bird habitat, the lake and adjacent land is a designated waterfowl refuge and closed Feb. 15-May 15 and Sept. 1-Jan. 1. The refuge area is marked in red on the map; however, wildlife viewing is available along Arnold Road all year long.
The park is recognized for its connection to the Underground Railroad via the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. Such designation is aimed at the places with significant ties to the Underground Railroad, the effort of enslaved African Americans to become free by flight from their bondage.
The trailhead for the park's 5-mile linear trail is in the parking lot off Arnold Road.
Before visiting a state park, boating site or trail, it’s always a good idea to check the latest closures due to weather-related events, planned improvement projects and repairs. Visit Michigan.gov/DNRClosures.
TripAdvisor Traveller RatingRead all TripAdvisor Reviews
|Season(s) of Operation