Located 15 miles east of Grayling off M-72 on Chase Bridge Road, The Mason Tract Pathway offers a network of 11.5 miles of scenic trail winding along the bank of the south branch of the AuSable River. The trail is identified by blue dots and triangle pathway markers. The Pathway offers moderate to difficult hiking, open to pets, camping in permitted only at the designated Canoe Harbor Campsite. Tackle the trail in the morning or early evening after canoeists have departed for the day, and you can sit quietly on the banks and watch trout rise to feed on insects. Mountain biking on the Mason Tract Pathway is prohibited via a Directors Order.
The Mason Tract is a 4,493 acre special management area along the South Branch of the AuSable River in Crawford County near Grayling designed to protect the quality fishing waters of this area. The only camping allowed is within Canoe Harbor State Forest Campground, located at the north end of the Tract on the AuSable River. The Mason Tract offers quality fishing, hunting, and canoeing opportunities. The Mason Tract is home to the pristine Mason Chapel. The Mason Family constructed the Chapel in 1960 to provide fishermen with a place of reverence and has developed into a popular tourist attraction. The Mason Tract also contains the Mason Tract Pathway, an 11.5 mile ungroomed hiking and cross country skiing trail. Loops range in length from 2.5 to 11.5 miles. It is recommended to ski or hike with a buddy as some sections of this trail are a considerable distance from the nearest plowed road. Mountain biking on the Mason Tract Pathway is prohibited via a Director's Order.
MichiganTrailMaps says, "Paralleling the west bank of the river is the Mason Tract Pathway, an 11.5-mile network of trails from M-72 to Chase Bridge on Chase Bridge Road (also known as County Road 519). The river moves in and out of view along this trek, as the trail works its way across the bluffs the South Branch flows between. Tackle the trail in the morning or early evening after canoeists have departed for the day, and you can sit quietly on the banks and watch trout rise to feed on insects." Click here for trail maps!