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Mebert Creek & Greeno Preserve

Mebert Creek & Greeno Preserve at a Glance

Features: birding, canoeing, fishing, hunting by permit only, kayaking, lake frontage, no trails, best seen on a guided hike, no trails, best viewed from canoe or kayak, not accessible; dense wetland or no access, wildflowers

Acreage: 214

Year Preserved: 1993

Trail: no trail system, best seen from the water


Guided Hikes

Greeno Preserve (21 acres)

Mebert Creek Preserve (40 acres)

Mebert Creek Natural Area (Owned and managed by Bingham Township, 153 acres)

A tapestry of wetland habitat provides an undisturbed haven for rare and threatened plants where Mebert Creek flows into Lake Leelanau. One of the region’s most diverse wetland complexes, with over a mile of shoreline, this area filters excess nutrients and protects water quality. (Rocky stream photo in fader series by Corey Humphrey, taken at Mebert Creek Preserve.)

Mebert Creek & Greeno Preserve Access

There are no trails or parking areas, but these properties may be accessed for hiking and exploring.

Getting there: Greeno Preserve and Mebert Creek Preserve may be accessed off of Lake Leelanau Drive. Mebert Creek Natural Area can be accessed off of E. Donner Road.


The Leelanau Conservancy purchased the original 140-acre Mebert Creek Natural Area and then helped Bingham Township to acquire it with the help of the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund. A second 13-acre parcel was added to the natural area, and then a third 21-acre parcel was donated by John Greeno.

“This land has been in my family since we established a fishing camp there in 1905, and we always wanted to keep it as natural as possible,” said John.

In 2015, the Conservancy purchased an additional 40 acres that connects the Veronica Valley County Park (owned and managed by Leelanau County) and the Mebert Creek Natural Area. The 40 acre Mebert Creek Preserve protects 3,000 additional feet along Mebert Creek- an alkaline, cold-water trout stream that is an important tributary flowing into Lake Leelanau. The land and other protected properties nearby serve as an important corridor for wildlife. It is owned and managed by the Leelanau Conservancy.


Plants at Mebert Creek and Greeno Preserve

The Mebert Creek FQA and Summary and Greeno FQA and Summary are available here. The FQA, or Floristic Quality Assessment, tells the story of the types and quality of flora at Mebert Creek and Greeno Preserves.

A Lush Mosaic of Ecology

The lowland forest contains birch, ash, basswood, red maple, white pine, tamarack, and cedar understory thrives where light breaks the canopy. A variety of ferns, wild rose and yellow lady’s-slippers provide shelter for reclusive species such as otter and bobcat.

Ecologist Glen Goff told the Michigan Natural Features Inventory, “the fen located along the shoreline of Lake Leelanau…is an exemplary natural feature of a type that is presently rare in northern Michigan.”

Get Involved

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Safety & Hunting

Poison Ivy is commonly found on impacted areas. Keep an eye out for this three leafed groundcover for it can give you an itchy rash. If your skin comes in contact with ivy, wash that area with soap a.s.a.p. Stay on the trails to reduce risk of contact.

THIS AREA IS OPEN TO HUNTING with written permission from the Leelanau Conservancy from October 1st – December 30 to reduce an unnaturally high white-tail deer population.   Too many deer threaten wildflowers and tree seedlings. Please use caution when hiking during hunting season, wear orange and keep dogs on a leash.