Are you planning a vacation to Grayling, but can’t bear leaving Fido at home? You’re in luck — Grayling is a great city to visit and explore with dogs. In fact, it offers a comprehensive outdoor experience that the two of you will love. Whether you’re after a casual stroll in the park, a bite to eat, or thrilling outdoor activities, there’s no shortage of things to do with your canine companion.
Open all year, North Higgins Lake State Park is a beautiful area nestled on Higgins Lake. It offers 449 acres with plenty of interesting hiking trails. Dogs aren’t allowed in swimming areas, however. Pack a picnic to eat at one of the picnic benches — and bring some treats for your dog! Hartwick Pines State Park is another beautiful, dog-friendly location. It’s a 49-acre forest and logging museum, which offers activities including, picnicking, fishing, bird watching, and paddling. Dogs aren’t allowed on the beach, but can go into all areas of the park on-leash. When traveling with your canine, it’s important to be responsible. So, take Fido for a vet checkup to make sure he’s healthy before your vacation in Grayling and update his identification in case he runs off. You should also always bring poop bags to clean up after your dog — something required by Michigan law.
Places to eat
When you’re hungry, head to Paddle Hard Brewing (227 Michigan Ave.) — a popular and dog-friendly local brewery. It offers a delicious menu, including, paninis, salads, artisan flatbread pizzas, and desserts. There’s also twenty beers on tap. Your dog will enjoy sitting in the shade with you at an outdoor table. Alternatively, Gates Au Sable Lodge (471 S Stephan Bridge Rd) is open from 8am to 7pm. You can order from an extensive menu, including, peanut butter sandwiches, burgers, soups, and more. It’s a dog-friendly environment with five outdoor tables to eat at alongside your dog.
Canoeing and kayaking
If you’re up for an adventure, book a canoeing or kayaking session at Borchers on the AuSable River — a scenic location with historical and cultural significance. Dogs are allowed to climb on board as long as they’re kept on a leash. A canoe session lasts 2.5 hours or even as long as five days if you decide to go camping. It’s a great chance to explore the river and catch some beautiful views. You can even buy special souvenirs and gifts in the Canoe Shop.
A vacation in Grayling is bound to be one to remember. If ever in doubt, call up a business or organization to check whether dogs are allowed beforehand. But with so many dog-friendly locations available, there’ll always be something to keep you and your pooch entertained.
Author – Sally Perkins