Experience Winter in Northern Michigan
The Silver Lake and Hart Areas both offer a breadth of scenic places to ski, hike, and snowshoe during the winter. Our parks and trails wind through wooded areas, across rolling hills, and along lakes and rivers — offering dazzling vistas and totally free outdoor fun.
Whether you’re an avid skier, snowshoer, or hiker, or you’re just beginning, you’ll love the experience of getting outdoors in a Northern Michigan winter. Here are some of the parks and trails you may enjoy exploring in our neck of the woods:
Just 15 minutes north of Silver Lake and Hart along the lakeshore, Pentwater Pathways offers an exquisite place to cross country ski and snowshoe.
The trail itself is located within the Pere Marquette State Forest and features four loops that total 15 miles of heavily wooded trail. Parking is free, and each route is marked from beginner to advanced. The majority of the trail covers gently rolling hills. Look closely and there’s a good chance you’ll get a glimpse of deer, foxes, birds, and other wildlife!
The Hart-Montague Bike Trail is another great place for outdoor adventure near Hart and Silver Lake. Formerly a railway line, the now paved trail is 22-miles long and extends south from Hart to Whitehall. Hop on at either trailhead or anywhere in between. It’s perfect for a day of cross-country skiing or snowshoeing and is likewise enjoyed by snowmobilers from all over the state and beyond. Just keep in mind there must be at least 4 inches of snow on the ground in order to snowmobile.
Located east of Hart in Elbridge Township, Gales Pond County Park is the ideal place to enjoy a couple hours in a peaceful outdoor setting, full of wildlife. The marked trail at Gales Pond is excellent for hiking and snowshoeing, or you can simply enjoy some tranquil moments on the boardwalk as there are infrequent visitors during the winter. Facilities include restrooms and picnic tables, and the boardwalk is handicap accessible. Just be sure to take care as it may get slippery.
Explore the frozen Lake Michigan shoreline at Little Sable Point Lighthouse Beach. This gorgeous sandy beach is enjoyed by locals and visitors in every season. Although the lighthouse itself is closed in the winter, the beach is still a great place to walk along the water and take in the expansive shoreline and Lake Michigan horizon — just be sure to dress warm!
In the summer, we hope you return to get a “higher view” from the historic Little Sable Point Lighthouse. The lighthouse is open for tours from May through September.
Looking for more places to enjoy the outdoors near Silver Lake and Hart? Check out our Parks & Trails Guide.
Make the Most of Your Winter Trip to the Silver Lake Sand Dunes Area!
Traveling Up North during the winter months means shorter lines, parks and trails all to yourself, and some of the most spectacular snowy landscapes in the state. Be sure to use our lodging guide to help you find the perfect place to stay while you’re here. Likewise, our Food & Drink and Things to Do in Silver Lake guides can help you schedule your days for the ideal getaway.
We look forward to welcoming you this winter in beautiful Silver Lake!