Popular Field Trip Locations

Three images of Rolling Hills County Park, Independence Lake, and County Farm Park

The locations below are some of our most popular locations to take groups. Provided is a brief description, but click the name of the location to learn even more about that park or preserve.

County Farm Park

The County Farm Park is located in southeast Ann Arbor, at 2230 Platt Road.

County Farm Park was once an actual working farm, but nature is slowly reclaiming the area. General nature topics are good themes to choose for field trips here.

A designated nature trail - Britton Woods: These woods contain typical tree and wildflower species for our area (spring wildflowers, including trillium, are abundant here) and offer a pleasant forest visit

  • Special program topics: forest ecology, spring wildflowers
  • Trail length: mile to mile (can be lengthened by using walking trails)
  • Tour length: 1 hour (can vary)

Fox Science Preserve

Follow these directions to find the Fox Science Preserve:

  • From I-94: Exit Number 169 (Zeeb Road), northbound
  • Turn right onto Miller Road, then left onto Peters Road
  • Entrance is on the east side of Peters Road, approximately 0.3 miles north of Miller Road.

The Fox Science Preserve - a former gravel pit - offers a rare opportunity to explore the geology of the region. Ancient table-zed glacial boulders of granite, tillite, gneiss, and limestone are scattered around the base of the former pit. Keep your eye out for fossils in the limestone boulders.

  • Trail length: 1/2 mile, mostly flat terrain
  • Tour length: 1.5 hours

Independence Lake County Park

The Independence Lake County Park is located in north central Washtenaw County, just west of Whitmore Lake, at 3200 Jennings Road.

The mile-long Prairie Meadows Nature trail focuses on the two most notable features of the park: Cordgrass Marsh and a remnant tall-grass prairie. Students will discover first hand the wonders of one of the best natural tall-grass prairies in Washtenaw County and experience various wetland habitats. Boardwalks and an observation tower provide unique viewing opportunities. A newly renovated office complex includes an Activity Room, where slide presentations can be offered, and groups can eat snack/lunches indoors.

  • Special program topics: prairie habitat, wetlands, frogs and toads/pond life (life cycles-spring only)
  • Trail length: 1 mile, flat terrain
  • Tour length: 2 hours, shorter walks can be arranged

Park Lyndon County Park

Park Lyndon County Park is located in western Washtenaw County, just north of Chelsea, on North Territorial Road.

Park Lyndon contains over 400 acres of some of the wildest nature in southeastern Michigan, including the Embury Swamp Natural Area Preserve. Woodlands, marshes, fens, swamps, and geologic landforms are used to explain how glacial events 10,000 years ago created one of the most unique preserves in the state.

  • Park Lyndon is divided into North and South. Trails used will depend on program topic.
    • Note: Lyndon South has a small cabin that can be used during nature field trips.
  • Special program topics: glacial geology, wetlands, forest ecology
  • Trail length: 1 to 1.5 miles, hilly terrain
  • Lyndon tour length: 2 hours, shorter walks can be arranged

Parker Mill County Park

Parker Mill County Park is located in eastern Washtenaw County, just east of Ann Arbor, at 4650 Geddes Road.

Parker Mill is a unique park, for it offers field trip opportunities for historical learning, as well as nature programming.

Parker Grist Mill

Visit Parker Grist Mill for a field trip at the mill which is an indoor/outdoor tour of the County's only operational pioneer flour mill. Students will learn about early area history, operation of the mill machinery, and see the processing of corn into flour, meal, and cracked corn. Due to the small size of the mill buildings, groups are limited to 30 people per tour.

  • Special program topics: Washtenaw County history, 19th century milling
  • Trail length: less than 100 yards
  • Tour length: 1 hour

Hoyt G. Post Memorial Trail

This trail is a beautiful winding boardwalk that will accommodate wheelchairs and others who need a safe level hiking surface, while providing a comprehensive nature experience. Interpretive platforms and signs discuss life the along the Fleming Creek floodplain as well as flood cycles and the influence of glaciers. The trail, which leads to a view of the Huron River, is intended to be self-guiding, but an interpreter can be provided, schedule allowing.

  • Special program topics: floodplain forest habitat
  • Trail length: about 1.25 miles (ADA handicap accessible)
  • Tour length: 1.5 to 2 hours for staff guided tour

Rolling Hills County Park

The Rolling Hills County Park is located in southeastern Washtenaw County, at 7660 Stony Creek Road.

This former Lake Erie shoreline contains a gently rolling landscape with a pond, wet-meadow, woodlot, an ancient dune, and a man-made prairie. Various topics can be taught.

  • Note: Rolling Hills has a lodge and sledding hill that could be incorporated into a winter field trip.
  • Special program topics:
    • Habitats
    • Birds (especially in spring, we have a nesting box program)
    • Frogs and toad/pond life (life cycles-spring only)
  • Trail length: many options, varies from .25 to 1 mile
  • Tour length: 1 to 2 hours
Three images of Park Lyndon, Parker Mill, and Fox Science