Yours Truly in Orange Hiking Gear | Jane Boursaw Photo
If you’ve encountered someone with a gun on the OMP trails lately, you might have been a bit taken aback. Many people don’t realize that hunting is allowed in certain Peninsula Township parks and nature preserves, which means if you hike the OMP trails regularly like I do, you’re likely sharing those trails with hunters between August 1 and March 31.
In short, wear bright orange on the trail during hunting season (which is now, starting with small game), lest a hunter mistake you for a deer or squirrel. This is also a great reminder to keep your dogs on leashes – also a requirement on most OMP trails (unless they’re hunting dogs). That’s yours truly in the photo above in my orange hiking gear.
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Because Old Mission Point Park – at the very end of the Peninsula – was funded by the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund years ago, hunting is allowed per DNR regulations. As Township Supervisor Rob Manigold noted during the Township Board meeting this week, the Township would not have been able to purchase this land if hunting were excluded.
The Township is in the process of buying and installing signs noting that hunting is allowed per DNR regulations, so look for those on the trails soon.
Here’s the rundown on where and when hunting is allowed in Peninsula Township parks and nature preserves. (Note that hunting is not allowed in the Pelizzari Natural Area, so walk that trail to your heart’s content.) And be sure and check out the 2021 Michigan Hunting Digest for more details.
Lighthouse Park/Old Mission Point Park
Lighthouse Park and Old Mission Point Park have the same trail system – meaning that you can hike from the Ridgewood Trailhead over to Lighthouse Park and back, by way of the Murray Road Trailhead. And as mentioned, because Old Mission Point Park was acquired by lease with the help of the Department of Natural Resources and the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund, this land is also accessible to hunters.
Here is the sign at the Lighthouse noting that hunting is allowed…
Old Mission Point Park on the Old Mission …….