Sailors Pines is a privately owned preserve of the stately Michigan White Pine where the public is welcome to visit this glimpse of our state's past. Near Croton Pond, stands a testament to Michigan's past, a virgin old growth forest of stately white pines, towering over 100 feet tall and up to 24 inches in diameter. A small plaque marks the entrance which dedicates this forest to the original owners, William and Elizabeth Sailors. The Sailors came from Indiana and became engaged in the lumbering business here in Michigan in the late 1800's.
Their son, David, saw all the white pine harvested from this area by the late 1890's and practically disappear from the land. David discovered this white pine forest in the 1920's. It was not large enough to timber off in the last wave of lumbering and so escaped the saws. David, who followed his father into the lumbering business, purchased the property to preserve it for future generations. He cleared the lower branches and carefully removed all hardwoods that had sprung up. Since the 1940's, he has kept the forest floor cleared and let the white pines grow to their full height undisturbed.
James Sailors is the son of David. He is the third generation involved in forestry products and maintains this old growth forest for all to see what the lumbermen of the early 1800's would have witnessed. The White Pine covered most of the state of Michigan. The size of this stand would yield over 18,000 board foot per acre.
The Sailors' family invites you to visit this wondrous forest, feel the coolness as you enter and enjoy the serenity of this place. Please, to protect this area, no fires or camping. But a picnic lunch would be welcome. Sailors' Pines is located on 52nd Street, 1/4 mile east of Locust Avenue on the north shore of Croton Pond. ( A short 30 to 45 minute trip from Grand Rapids)
As long as you are in this area, don't forget to visit the High Rollway on M-82 east of Newaygo. A spectacular panoramic view of the Muskegon River Valley at any season, breathtaking in the fall. Local lore says this is where the lumbermen rolled the white pine logs to the river below to transport them to Lake Michigan and beyond.
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www.naturalmoment.com White Pines pictured are in Wykoff Run, Pennsylvania