Bete Grise Wetlands Preserve

Open to the Public


Things To Do

This land will be open for foot access and activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, bird watching and swimming. View All

Plan Your Visit

Located in Keweenaw County in the Upper Peninsula View All

Get Directions

The 62-acre Bete Grise Wetlands Preserves consists of just over 4,000 feet of sandy shoreline along Lake Superior leading to dune and swale wetlands and 1,000 feet of frontage on the Mendota Ship Canal.

Why the Conservancy Selected This Site
The larger area of Bete Grise contains an excellent quality Great Lakes Marsh and nearly one and a half miles of high quality sand beach along Lake Superior, possibly the longest in the Keweenaw. Common Loon, Merlin, and Bald Eagle nest at the site and four species of special plants are found in the wetland areas of the site. This entire beach area was slated for a housing development in the early 2000’s. After many public meetings and negotiation, the property was set aside for conservation, opening the beach to the public.

What the Conservancy Has Done/Is Doing
Most of the Conservancy’s work at Bete Grise has been focused on supporting the Houghton/Keweenaw Conservation District and other partners. To date, we have assisted HKCD in acquiring more than 2,500 acres for their Bete Grise Preserve.

Easiest access to the Bete Grise Wetlands Preserve is thru the Houghton/Keweenaw Conservation District’s Bete Grise Preserve. The green represents our preserve. The purple is land we have assisted the HKCD in acquiring. The orange is property we intend to transfer to the conservation district.

Bete Grise is a popular swimming destination. Bring sunscreen. Spring, late summer and early fall are the best times to visit this preserve to fully enjoy the beauty of the Keweenaw Peninsula without the irritation of the biting insects that come out in the early summer. If you want to visit during the early summer months, bring insect repellant.

Permitted Activities:

  • Hiking, skiing, and snowshoeing
  • Bird watching, nature study and photography
  • Swimming in Lake Superior
  • Kayaks and canoes are permitted on Lake Superior. Vessels must be carried from the parking area.
  • Research projects and educational studies with approved permit

Prohibited Activities:

  • No motorized and non-motorized vehicles
  • No building of new trails
  • No pets
  • No hunting or trapping
  • No removal of plants or animals (alive or dead)
  • No removal of rocks, water, or other non-organic materials
  • No camping, bonfires, fireworks, or other fires
  • No firewood collecting
  • No littering

Please see "Preserve Visitation Guidelines."


From Houghton/Hancock, Michigan:

  1. Take US-41 north for roughly 40 miles to the Gay-Lac La Belle Road which will be on the right-hand side of US-41.
  2. Turn right and travel south, then east roughly eight miles around Lac La Belle and towards Lake Superior.
  3. Park in the parking lot for the Houghton/Keweenaw Conservation District’s Bete Grise Preserve.
  4. You will need to walk north along the beach to enter our preserve.

Have you been to this preserve? Are you thinking of visiting? See what others are saying about their experiences and add your comments below.

Add Your Comments

Time for you to join the discussion. Tell us about your experience at this preserve. What plants and animals did you see? When did you go? You can help others plan their visit when you share your thoughts. And thank you for visiting one of our nature preserves!

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