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The scent of wild olives and lilacs.

Trees leafing out in the warm May sun.

Fishermen finessing their catch through a swift current..

Sandhill cranes ratcheting in the wetlands. 

I love spring in Michigan, don’t you?

Beyond winter’s snowy domain lies the season when the land returns to life. Spring may come to our state later than we’d like, but when it arrives, it does so with energy. The redwing blackbirds reappear to stake out their territory in the countryside. Trout lilies and hepaticas grace the woodlands, and marsh marigolds light the swamps. As the days lengthen, the warming skies alternate between glorious fair weather and lightning-laced storms. It’s all part of the drama and pageantry of spring in this beautiful and diverse state of ours.

I came across Lucy Kish and Charlie Ellis at the Flat River Grill in Lowell. They couldn’t have picked a more pleasant evening to enjoy dinner there on the outdoor patio, with the river gliding by just a stone’s throw away.

“What do you love about spring in Michigan?” I asked them.

“The trees leafing out,” Lucy replied. “The flowers,” said Charlie. “The warmer weather—though I’m a four-season guy.”

I suppose it’s because we get all four seasons here in Michigan that spring is so special. And Charlie is not alone in appreciating the flowers. After winter’s black-and-white austerity, the explosion of color that characterizes April, May, and June is a highlight for anyone who calls Michigan home.

I myself am pretty gonzo about the spring flowers. With its abundance of water and vast variety of ecosystems, Michigan is a botanist’s dream, home to hundreds of colorful treasures such as the wild phlox in this photo. But of course, this time of year offers plenty of other delights as well for the outdoors enthusiast.

In Fallasburg Park, while I was photographing the Flat River from the footbridge, a fisherman worked his way out into the water and began casting. At least one of the things he loved about spring in Michigan seemed pretty clear, but I asked him the question anyway.

“I’ll tell you something,” he said. “I come from Austin, Texas. There, you have to travel a long way to see the countryside. Here…” He shrugged. “The outdoors is easy to get to.”

Indeed it is. Whether your passion is fishing, or gardening, or hiking, or turkey hunting, springtime in our state is a season when the outdoors opens for business with as many options to offer as there are kinds of people to enjoy them.

What’s to love about Michigan this time of year? Chances are, you’ve got answers of your own.

So…what do you love about Michigan in the spring?

Why not drop us a comment and share your thoughts.

mbphlox

mblucyandcharlie

mbflatriver

mbfisherman

Written by Dave.