The days might be getting shorter and the pools and beaches long-closed for the season, but there are still plenty of activities that are available at the Huron-Clinton Metroparks all year long. The fun doesn’t have to stop just because summer is over. Staying active in parks year-round is a great way to support your physical and mental health even in the colder months.

One of the most popular year-round amenities that visitors flock to the Metroparks’ for are their nearly 400 miles of trails. For the wildlife-enthusiasts, there are the nature trails that offer beautiful views of scenery and Michigan wildlife in all seasons. If you’re looking for a more up-north feel close to home, try out the rustic hiking trails. And for everyone from the fitness fanatics to those looking for a nice and easy stroll through the park, there are the paved hike-bike trails that span for miles in each Metropark.

As the name suggests, these trails are also great spots for biking and the paved trails are maintained all year round. That means they are cleared and salted as needed for your safe enjoyment by foot, bike, handcycle, wheelchair or stroller. One can’t talk about biking in the Metroparks without also mentioning Shelden Trails at Stony Creek Metropark – recently revamped, the trails are a crown jewel of the local mountain biking community. In the winter, the trails stay open for fat-tire biking meaning bikers can seek the thrills of Shelden Trails in every season.

Only closed two days a year, Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, the award-winning Metroparks interpretive centers offer year-round fun and educational opportunities. Stop by to see an array of interactive displays and historical artifacts – each center is unique to its natural and cultural community and park. If you’re looking for something more hands-on and guided, the centers offer year-round programming like the upcoming Owl Prowls and popular holiday programs like Holiday Lights at the Farm.

As winter heads in and the snow starts to fly, an abundance of winter activities become available at the Metroparks. For kids and those young-at-heart, sledding hills exist at 6 different Metroparks or for those a little more adventurous, try out the snowboarding hills. Park-goers can perfect their figure 8s on the ice rinks at Kensington, Lake St. Clair or Stony Creek Metroparks. Cross country ski trails are available at 9 parks across the region and some parks offer affordable equipment rentals. Even if there isn’t snow, Huron Meadows Metropark makes their own snow for the cross-country ski trails, so skiing is available all winter long.

When the summer sun does make its way back around again, a whole slew of warm weather activities open for park guests – take a dip in the pool, splash around at the splash pad, race down the waterslides or cool off at the beach. Get out on the water in a boat or paddle along the river or lakes in a kayak or canoe. Keep the kids busy with a trip to the playground – each Metropark has at least one playground and new, accessible playgrounds recently opened at Kensington and Lower Huron Metroparks.

How can you gain access to all this fun? By purchasing an annual Metroparks Pass! While daily passes are available for purchase, annual passes pay for themselves after just 4 visits to the parks and gain you access to all 13 Metroparks 365 days of the year. 2023 annual passes have just gone on sale and residents of the Metroparks’ five-country region can receive a $5 discount until the end of the year. Visit www.metroparks.com/shop to purchase your 2023 Metroparks annual pass today.

The content for this article was provided by Huron-Clinton Metroparks.