- Waterloo State Recreation Area
Infobox_protected_area | name = Waterloo State Recreation Area
caption =Waterloo State Recreation Area includes convert|21000|acre|km2 of forest, wetlands, lakes, and rivers in Michigan's lower peninsula.
area = convert|21000|acre|km2
Michigan Department of Natural Resources
Waterloo State Recreation Area is the third-largest park in
Michigan, encompassing over convert|21000|acre|km2 of forest, lakes and wetlands. Located in Michigan's northeast Jackson county and parts of Washtenaw county, the park is the largest in the lower peninsula.
The park offers over 434 campsites that are available in two modern
campgrounds and one rustic campground for the adventurous crowd. Also available to visitors are thirteen rustic cabins.
The park offers extensive trails that wind through the vast landscape and around the eleven lakes that exist within the park's confines. The lakes host a variety of fish species which include
Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Bluegill, Sunfish, Catfish, Northern Pikeand others. Crooked Lake, Clear Lake, Little Portage Lake, Mill Lake, Sugarloaf Lake, Doyle Lake, Merkle Lake, Mud Lake, and the Wimmewana Impoundmentare among the eleven bodies of water found in the park.
Clear Lake, Doyle Lake, Little Portage Lake and Merkle Lake are accessible by foot only by crossing state land. Fishing piers are located on Big Portage and Crooked lakes. Sugarloaf Lake has state owned access limited to campers and a privately owned access site.
In addition, the park boasts an
equestriancampground, a swimming beach, several picnic sites, 11 excellent fishing lakes, eight boat launches, convert|12|mi|km of interpretive nature trails, convert|47|mi|km of hiking trails and numerous equestrian trails. Boats may be rented by visitors at Big Portage Lake from the park if needed.
Public boat launches are located on the following lakes: Big Portage, Cedar, Green, Crooked, Mill, Mud, and Walsh. The Winnewana Impoundment also provides a boat landing. The launch site at Big Portage Lake meets
ADAAGstandards for universal accessibility. [http://www.michigantrails.us/jackson-county-michigan/waterloo-state-recreation-area.html]
Gerald E. Eddy Discovery Center
The Gerald E. Eddy Discovery Center features exhibits on the geology and natural habitats of Waterloo State Recreation Area, both in pre-settler times and today. Another display shows fluted spear points used by the Paleo-Indian hunters and other cultural history artifacts. There is an auditorium, interactive exhibits and computer games. The center hosts special events and programs for school groups.
* [http://www.michigandnr.com/parksandtrails/Details.aspx?id=506&type=SPRK Waterloo Recreation Area official site]
* [http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-10365_10887-23047--,00.html Gerald E. Eddy Discovery Center]
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