The headwaters and mainstream of the AuSable River flow within easy driving distance of Grayling. For that matter, the mainstream itself flows through the city although to see the most scenic aspects it is advisable to obtain a county map and cross it further downstream. Perhaps the best way to see the true wilderness is to use a canoe or kayak.
Although not as well-known as the AuSable River, the Manistee River is a hidden jewel. Much of its length is less populated by humans than the AuSable. It is ideal for wildlife watching and scenic photography. Here again a canoe or kayak is the best way to obtain the wilderness experience although scenic wonders can be had at any woodland area bridge that spans the river.
Lakes: There are numerous lakes in the county. Some are well-known for fishing, others are popular for boating and swimming.