Michigan Map

Nahma Marsh Trail

Odd History of the Marsh

Directions - About 7 miles east of Rapid River on U.S. 2, head south on County Road 497.  There will be a sign on the right side of the road designating the turn off.  The parking area is a just a few yards down a gravel road.

Nahma Township


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Darkest Skies in the Upper Peninsula

Stargazing is a cool reason for a Michigan road trip.  Dark skies are disappearing across the state and country. To help preserve starry sky viewing, some locations have been designated as Dark Sky Preserves. This designation by the state protects these areas from development and the introduction of artificial light. There are no state designated Dark Sky Preserves in the upper peninsula of Michigan. A statute prohibits the creation of Dark Sky Preserves in the upper peninsula.

Dark Starry Skies

After months of travel and research, we decided that the darkest skies in the upper peninsula of Michigan are in Delta County. A few miles north of the town of Nahma in the Hiawatha National Forest is a viewing platform at the end of the Nahma Marsh Trail.  The trail is short, only a third of a mile. The viewing platform is large enough to accommodate several people and their cameras or telescopes. The platform was built to serve birdwatching, but it is perfect for stargazing. The night sky is perfectly dark.

Dark sky preserves are often in remote locations making them difficult to access. Often there are few amenities available like food and lodging. That isn’t the case with the dark skies at Nahma. Just 2 miles away is a historic inn with excellent food, comfortable rooms and high speed WiFi.

The combination of dark skies and local accommodations make this a perfect destination for camera clubs, astronomy clubs and just about anyone who wants a convenient way to enjoy the northern lights, meteor showers or just a little stargazing.