Al Sabo Land Preserve

Al Sabo Land Preserve of Kalamazoo County, Michigan

Hiking the Al Sabo Land PreserveCross country skiing the Al Sabo Land PreserveMountain biking the Al Sabo Land Preserve

Trail Distance:

25 miles long.


Al Sabo Preserve is located between Interstate 94 to the north, Centre Street to the south, Texas Drive to the east, and Kalamazoo Valley Community College at 9th Street and O Ave to the west. Atwater Millpond at the northeast corner of the Al Sabo Preserve, fed by the west branch of Portage Creek, which flows through Al Sabo Preserve, and forms a tributary for the Kalamazoo River. Camp Rota-Kiwan boy scout camp lies at the southwest corner of Al Sabo Preserve. Hiking trails cross this boundary.

Access to the Al Sabo Preserve is gained through an entrance on Texas Drive, near the intersection of Texas and 10th Avenue. A parking lot for Al Sabo Preserve is located next to the the Texas Drive entrance to Camp Rota-Kiwan. Foot trails lead into Al Sabo Preserve from the Rota-Kiwan Boy Scout Camp, and from the campus of Kalamazoo Valley Community College.

Trail Description:

Al Sabo Preserve is an area of northeastern Texas Township, in southwestern Kalamazoo County, in the United States of America. It comprises 741 acres of marsh, forest, streams, and rolling hills. Numerous trails provide recreational opportunities throughout the Preserve.

Mountain biking is a popular activity in Al Sabo Preserve. Though over two thirds of the trails were closed to cycling as a result of erosion, over seven miles remain. These trails include Moab, Atwater, Lookout, and Mandala Two boardwalks are present (but not easy to find) in Al Sabo Preserve, providing access to the water from the hiking trails above. In addition, numerous overlooks provide panoramic views of the Preserve, particularly in the winter and spring.

Wildlife Viewing:

Wildlife abounds in Al Sabo Preserve. Bird species include many types of duck, goose, and swan. Sandhill cranes nest in the preserve. Muskrat and perhaps beaver occasionally create dams on Portage Creek, causing flooding upstream in the spring, and inundation of the Atwater Millpond shoreline when cleared. Deer, fox, coyote, raccoons, squirrels, and other mammals reside in the area. Fish include bass, bluegill, perch, and crappie. Soft-shell, snapping, and other turtle species populate the area, laying eggs near the sandy road that bisects the preserve.

Return to Kalamazoo County, MI Trails Page

Permission and information sources are from Contributers to this Web Site, the Department of Natural Resources,, National Park Service, and the USDA Forest Service.


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