scotts Point beach trail - Michigan
The beach and shoreline at Scott's Point, are easy to get to, but are so little known that visitors often have the entire place to themselves. This spot is so secluded, that a walk along the beach could qualify as a "trail". I often use this spot as a break on my drives across the upper peninsula, and have yet to see anyone else there. The road to Scott's Point, and the parking area are paved yet, when you exit your vehicle, the sense of seclusion is immediate. The only sounds are the waves of Lake Michigan, the whispering of the branches in the old forest, and songs of birds on the wing. The beach and the lake are just a few steps away.
A walk along the shoreline is an easy stroll on packed sand, that in some places extends well out into the lake, offering a view of the shoreline that is usually only possible from wading out into the water. At Scott's Point, the water is shallow in most places being only ankle deep more than 20 yards out. If you don't want to wade, there are usually a few long points of sand and pebbles that extend out into the water, formed by the action wind and water.
The beach can seem endless. From the parking area, the sand extends for more than a mile eastward along a gentle bay past Peterson Point, visible in the distance. A few yards from the waterline the forest begins. Towering pines form a dense woodland, that is broken up by small ponds among the dunes, and several icy cold streams, that empty into the lake. The forest is home to the usual wildlife, out on the sand you may see Great Blue Herons, or Piping Plovers. Hidden away in the protection of the trees one can find a couple of rare wildflowers, the Lake Huron Tansy and the Dwarf Lake Iris.
Another feature of Scott's Point, that sparks the imagination, is the group of islands visible in the distance. The several islands, shimmering like a mirage on the surface of Lake Michigan, make up the Beaver Island Archipelago. On a clear day, one can even make out the abandoned lighthouse on Squaw Island. This is the closest view of the islands, from any spot on the Michigan mainland.