McCourtie Park, Michigan

 

In southeast Michigan is a region historically known as the “Irish Hills“. Close by major metro areas, this region was and is a favorite for a Sunday drive along U.S., 12 also known as the Great Sauk Trail. Almost directly south of Jackson is Somerset Township and McCourtie Park.

What you'll find: You won’t find anything if you aren’t observant, you can easily blow right by this spot and most people do. Keep watch and just east of Somerset Township you will see what appears to be two huge cement trees standing among normal trees on the north side of the road. There is a turning and a small sign announcing McCourtie Park. Take a walk or, better yet, plan a picnic. The park is several acres and contains a meandering stream. You can cross that stream using any one of seventeen bridges. These bridges are all different. One looks like an old log bridge and another looks like a suspension bridge. What they have in common is that they are all made of concrete and are all the work of one man. Those trees are concrete and are actually the chimneys for an underground heating and cooling system that served a rathskeller.

Directions: East of Somerset Township you will see what appears to be two huge cement trees standing among normal trees on the north side of the road. There is a turning and a small sign announcing McCourtie Park. .