Rosy Mound Natural Area


Rosy Mound is a park in Ottawa County that is comprised of huge dunes, heavily forested areas, and long stretches of pristine Lake Michigan beach. The walk is moderately strenuous due to 1,000+ feet of stairs and dunes that you have to climb and meander along as you hike.  It is only .7miles from the parking lot to the beach access (one way), but if you want a little more length to your hike you can do the 3 mile loop instead.



We chose to do the 3 mile loop with a few stops thrown into the mix. Lake Michigan was the warmest I've felt it all year, which meant my toes needed to be submerged as much as possible.  The hike was very fun and we (luckily) caught it on a slow day.  It was overcast and not too hot, so most people weren't doing a ton of swimming.  You can hike Rosy Mound and set up your beach stuff for the day on one of the two beach access points.  The beach was nice and clean here, so it would probably be a great place to spend the day.  Plus, there were two very nicely maintained public restrooms, which is always a positive.


Overall,  we really like this scenic hike and I would recommend it to others looking for a fun way to spend the day. The views are spectacular and the hike is actually decently strenuous due to all of the ups and downs the dunes cause. The only negative to hiking here is that the county collects a parking fee of $7/day (only during peak season).  I'm still used to Alaska where all of the parks and hiking trails are free.  Plus, $7 to complete an hour long hike seems a little steep, in my opinion. I think I'll mostly stick to hiking there in the October-April season.  I've heard it's absolutely beautiful there in the fall when the colors are changing.  Maybe we'll head back in October and get some new pics!

Your turn…How do you feel about paying to hike? 
Currently listening to…October-Tunng

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