Today we visited Squiers Preserve, one of 3 small county preserves in western Washtenaw County. This small and uniquely shaped preserve is on Silvan Rd in Silvan Township. The preserve covers 59 acres of slightly rolling land and features mixed woodlands, wetlands and open meadows. The preserve is interesting in that it features several artesian wells that feed its wetland habitats.
Squires is tucked behind a residential area just west of the Chrysler proving grounds and just north of the Squiers home. To access the trails, there is a long narrow strip land making a path from the parking lot back to the main body of the preserve.
- Scenery – 4
- Trail Condition – 2
- Quiet/Solitude – 5
- Difficulty – 1
- Overall – 3
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This preserve features a big loop trail with branches go through the property and reconnect to the main trail. The loop measures a little over a mile in length, but with all the side paths you could spend a pleasant morning exploring the meadow and woodland areas.
On this day’s trek, I was accompanied by a friendly pup from one of the nearby houses who wanted to be my local guide. My new companion seemed very familiar with the area, so I let him lead the way.
After passing along the backyards of the preserve’s neighbors, the trail winds back into a woodland with lush overgrowth for a few hundred feet.
It gets a little confusing when you come out of this first wooded area as there are multiple paths across the meadow. But, don’t worry about it too much as they all meet up on the other side.
When exploring a new park, I tend to always take the left fork in a path and try to go counter-clockwise around the area. That way I can stay on the outer paths and explore the middle after getting a good lay of the land.
The wooded area provided a very restful walk, with the nicely filtered sun lighting the forest floor.
The highlight of the walk was finding this odd little cabin in the woods. Not sure if it really is a hunting blind or just a place for someone hang out and observe the forest. Anyway, it was filled with cobwebs, so my companion and I chose to stay outside.
After passing through the woods, you come out into another meadow on the back of the property. This area was open enough to attract a very large hawk that flew over my head as I emerged from the treeline.
By this time my canine companion had left me behind, perhaps getting a little impatient with my wandering. But I wasn’t alone long, I found my guide waiting where the trail leads back into the woods.
From there, the well-marked trail guided us back through woodland to the meadow, where we rejoined the trail to the parking lot.
Squire’s is a great “pocket preserve”, small enough to export in a few hours, but still large enough to feel like you can relax in the natural area.
Where is this?
Squires Preserve is located at 1280 SYLVAN RD, Chelsea, MI 48118. It is just south of I-94 exit 157 wast of Chelsea, MI. The preserve’s parking lot is across the Sylvan Rd from the Chrysler proving grounds.