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Mio Ranger Station

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General Information

Kirtland's Warbler
Copyright: - US Forest Service
Kirtland's Warbler
Description - The Huron-Manistee National Forest (964,974 acres) is actually two forests combined for administration purposes. The Mio Ranger Station is part of the 433,912-acre Huron National Forest. With elevations reaching over 1,400 feet, the Mio Ranger Station is a compilation of beautiful hardwood forests with morainal hills, glacial-sculpted depressions resulting in small lakes and waterways. Vegetation varies from tag alder and conifer swamps to upland jack pine, white pine, oak and maple woodlands. With the diversity of habitats comes the diversity of wildlife including beaver, deer, otter, and bird life. A highlight of the Forest is the Mack Lake area, with its rolling jack pine plains that provide nesting habitat for the endangered Kirtland's Warbler. Small lakes are characteristic of the region but do not diminish the appeal. Kneff Lake, a 20-acre lake is a designated trout lake stocked with rainbow trout, and Wagner Lake is a scenic 26-acre clear water source that supports abundant populations of bass and pan fish.

Attractions - Outdoor activities on the Mio Ranger Station occur all four seasons. From summer camping at more than half a dozen developed Forest campgrounds to winter sledding, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling, the area invites the user to explore Huron National Forest's beautiful woodlands and waterways.

Mio Ranger Station has an extensive trail system for a variety of users including several segments of the Shore-to-Shore Trail found along Luzerne, McKinley, and South Branch Trail Camp (Huron Shores RS). Used primarily by equestrians, these trails are open to hikers and mountain bikers as well, with amenities that include overnight facilities. Enjoy hiking historical routes? Try the Midland - Mackinac Trail, the original Mackinac Pathway, 200+ mile migratory route used by the Chippewa Indians. Twelve miles rest on Mio Ranger Station. Enjoy the combination of hiking and bird watching? The Wakeley Lake Foot-Travel Area is perfect. It has been designed for the protection and restoration of threatened loons and eagles, while providing a 17 mile trail system that enables visitors to explore a scenic, non-motorized area where nesting loons may be observed each year from March 1 to July 15. A wintertime trail option might be the Loud Creek Cross-country Ski Trail, a cooperative management effort between the Forest Service and the Loud Creek Nordic Ski Club. They provide a 960-acre trail system for hiking, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding. Enjoy motorized trails? The Mack Lake Campground offers the rider access to some of Michigan's finest ATV trails in addition to offering an overnight campsite.

If you're looking for a quiet, scenic destination to take the family, try one of the Forest's quiet lakes such as Wagner and Kneff. Encircled by stately hardwoods and conifers, the lakes offer families an opportunity to enjoy good fishing, a lakeside picnic, and a pleasant swim at a developed beach site.

Snowmobilers find 121 miles of route available in Oscoda County. Call 989-826-3252 for maps.

Recreation - Recreation opportunities on the Mio Ranger Station include paddling, camping, picnicking, swimming, boating, fishing, nature study, extensive hiking, ATV riding, horseback riding, mountain biking, and an array of winter sports and wildlife viewing.

Climate - Northern Michigan normally experiences mild summers with average temperatures around 70 degrees F (21 degrees C). Winter temperatures average 14 - 22 degrees F (-10 to -6 degrees C). Yearly rain and snowmelt in the region averages 28 - 36 inches but can be dramatically altered by the "lake effect," thus depositing significant amounts of snow within a short period of time causing hazardous road conditions.

Location - Mio Ranger Station administers the western portion of Huron National Forest in the lower northern peninsula of Michigan. Major routes include Michigan 30, 33 and 72.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
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Filed By: Amanda (Saginaw, MI)
Number of People Encountered: 11-25 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: This was my first visit to Mio and the Huron National Forest. I am familiar though with the Au Sable river as my grandparents summered at their cottage along the Au Sable's 'Holy Ground' from an infant throughout my teen years. We camped right in the forest in a rustic area, near a 'scenic view' of the river. The Porta-John/potty was brand spanking new!! Wildlife was easy to spot and in abundance. While the temperature was about 45-50 degrees, the campfire kept us plenty warm. The river was cold as normal. The water levels seem very good and the flies were hatching. Not much biting though. Full off of the flies; I suppose. Wonderful, clean, quiet environment if you can handle no electricity or running hot water. Canoeing proved to be very satisfying although if I went at this temp. again; I'd take some gloves along.

More Information

Contact Information:
Mio Ranger Station, 401 Court Street , Mio, MI, 48647, Phone: 989-826-3252, TTY: 989-826-3592

Additional Information:
Huron-Manistee National Forests - The Huron-Manistee National Forest is spread across the northern Lower Peninsula of Michigan. Sandy, rolling and forested hills make up the Huron- Manistee, the only National Forest in Michigan's Lower Peninsula.

Huron-Manistee National Forests - Official agency website.

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