For an indexed Google map of Ann Arbor parks, see tinyurl.com/2774x8a
An almost unbroken chain of parks lines the Huron River through Ann Arbor. Across the river from Bird Hills Nature Area is Barton Nature Area, on Huron River Dr. west of Main, where lovely Barton Pond and a forested backdrop are visible above the dam. To the east, Bandemer Park offers wooded walks, a 9-hole disc golf course, a dirt bike jump course, and an elegant, little-used picnic shelter. A loop trail circles Argo Pond through Bandemer Park and Argo Park. A pedestrian boardwalk connects to a foot trail that follows the eastern shoreline south through dense willows and oaks to the canoe livery off Longshore Dr. In a grassy area nearby, rare bird species have been sighted. A paved bike path runs on the west side of the pond from Bandemer to Argo Dam. From the dam, the trail follows the millrace down to the Broadway Bridges. A path beneath the bridges connects to Riverside Park, a pleasant place shaded by huge willows.
Across Maiden Ln. from Riverside Park is Island Park, with footbridges, paved trails, a Greek Revival picnic shelter, and flocks of waterfowl. An old dirt road, now a walking path, ascends from the woods at the back of the park and reaches Cedar Bend Nature Area, a woodland hillside (also accessible from Broadway via Cedar Bend Dr.) with an opening that offers a partial view of the city's skyline.
Across the river from Island Park are the busy soccer fields, swimming pool, and play areas of Fuller Park. From there, a bike and pedestrian path runs east along Fuller Rd. and around the U-M's Mitchell Field and its softball diamonds, connecting to Gallup Park's bike path.
In Gallup Park, the city's most popular park, arched footbridges connect a series of small islands. The livery rents canoes, paddleboats, and kayaks. A bike trail, heavily used by joggers and in-line skaters, runs along the south bank of the river all the way to Dixboro Rd. There, a path connects Gallup with Parker Mill and Forest Nature Area.