Forest Nature Area


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Forest Nature Area is a unique park property— you may have visited without realizing it was city property, or you might not realize that it even exists! Forest is connected to Parker Mill County Park and only accessible by walking through Parker Mill. Both Forest and Parker Mill are managed by the Washtenaw County Department of Parks and Recreation. Forest is a 17-acre woodland and wetland along the Huron River and Fleming Creek​. View the Ann Arbor Parks and Nature Areas map for location context. Fleming Creek flows through the park with a boardwalk following its course. Deep into the park there is a bench at a scenic viewing area along the Huron River. During your walk, you will visit a forest community that has a rich layer of woodland wildflowers. The Hoyt G. Post Trail memorial boardwalk trail leads the hiker through an excellent example of a wet forest including black maple, hackberry and rock elm and has interpretative signs throughout. Forest is one of the few Ann Arbor park locations that has hosted the Prothonotary Warbler, which is a species of special concern.​ A historic mill and other buildings are located at the northwest end of Parker Mill.​​ Parker Mill connects to Gallup Park and the B2B Trail runs through the park.

Park Notices

Unless otherwise posted per City Council resolution, when a park is closed, no person shall remain in or enter it other than to quietly sit or walk.​

Refer to Chapter 39 of the City of Ann Arbor Code of Ordinances for park regulations and rules.

Park Hours

8 a.m. – Dusk​








Access and Parking

Forest Nature Area can only be accessed by walking through Parker Mill County Park​. There is a parking lot for Parker Mill off of Geddes Rd. It takes about 10 minutes to walk from the Parker Mill entrance to get to Forest.​​ Forest is accessed by walking on the Hoyt G. Post Trail— the trail enters​ Forest when it goes underneath the railroad bridge. The park is sometimes inaccessible in the spring when water levels are high.

Parker Mill connects to Gallup Park via the B2B Trail​ which runs through the park, which walkers and bicyclists can use to get to the park. There are bike racks in Parker Mill. Bicycles are not allowed on the boardwalk trail in Forest.​

Public Transportation

There is a bus stop on the corner of Dixb​oro Road and Geddes, about a three minute wa​lk from the park​​. Visit TheRide​ for closest stops and route details or check out the parks ride guide​​.

Map of the trail that connects Parker Mill and Gallup Park



Ann Arbor's city parks sit on the ancestral and traditional homelands​ of several indigenous Native peoples. Read a land acknowledgement​​ from the city and learn more a​bout the early history of the land here.​​

Forest Nature Area was donated to the city in 1937 by notable local philanthropist and industrialist H.B. Earhart.​ Read an overview of the life and accomplishments of Earhart in his obituary​ from the Ann Arbor News in 1954. The property still belongs to the City of Ann Arbor, but it has been leased to Washtenaw County since 1984, which manages the property and owns Parker Mill County Park. ​​


Volunteer in the parks

Looking to make an impact in a park or nature area? Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation provides volunteer opportunities for almost every interest, ability, and commitment level.

Learn more about volunteer opportunities
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A2 Fix It

A2Fix It - Service request tool

A2 Fix It is an online system you can use to report any maintenance issues or other problems during your park visit. When reporting an issue in a park please include detailed location information in the "details and description" section near the end of the request process. Pictures that provide location context are very helpful.

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