The Highlands

Grand Rapids, MI
Length: 2.00 mi.
Type: Loop

About This Trail

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The Highlands is located on the west side of the city of Grand Rapids at the former Highlands Golf Club and adjacent to Blandford Nature Center. Blandford Nature Center and the Land Conservancy of West Michigan collaborated on the purchase of the 121-acre property in the winter of 2017 with a vision to transform the property into a natural area for community recreation and education.

Currently, The Highlands closely resembles its 100+ year history as a golf course. However, in its first season as a natural area, the grass has grown high and wildlife has moved in, including turtles, fox, deer, muskrat, and a multitude of birds and insects. The restoration of this landscape will bring about substantial improvements to water and air quality in the city and will help in the city’s goal to increase forest canopy. The project also offers educational opportunities and will be a model for large-scale urban restoration in the region.

There are 3 different trail loops to choose from.  All are either cut grass or gravel and all-terrain stroller friendly. They range from .4 to 1.1 miles, adding up to approximately 2 miles.

Parking is available in the large lower lot. Parking in the circle drive lot in front of the clubhouse and the lot behind the clubhouse is reserved for building tenants only.

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Trail Features

Surface type Dirt
Carrier needed No
Stroller friendly Yes
ADA accessible No
Water fountains No
Bathrooms No
Pet friendly Yes
Nearby convenience store Yes
Camping Nearby No
Emergency support
within 5 miles

Trail highlights


There’s a large birch tree on the Blandford Loop that’s great for climbing and a good photo op.

At the north end on the Oakleigh Loop, you’ll find a pond with koi fish.

Trail Contributor

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About The Guide

Hike it Baby Family Trail Guide is an online resource to help families with children source trails that little legs can hike and parents can feel comfortable with. Hike details are sourced and have been hiked by families who participate in our community. Our contributors do their best to give you all the details they can, but if something is missed, you can reach out to the contributor and offer suggestions for them to add to make it a better trail description for all. This guide was built with a generous 3-year partnership with L.L Bean. Like Hike it Baby, L.L Bean believes that helping get families into nature from birth on is key to healthier, happier communities.