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 Nude Beaches and Public Lands / Nudism Places
 Nude Beach Trip Reports
 Oval Beach, Saugatuck, MI
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Author Previous Topic: OREGON-Rooster Rock State Park & Collins Beach Topic Next Topic: Update on San Onofre beach in California??
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newlynude
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Posted - 06/27/2007 :  1:54:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have heard there is a nude beach in Saugatuck, Michigan that is part of or next to Oval Beach. Has anyone been there that can give a current report? Thanks

Edited by - Moderator on 06/27/2007 2:59:22 PM

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TheOmne
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Posted - 08/02/2007 :  04:12:21 AM  Show Profile  Visit TheOmne's Homepage  Send TheOmne an AOL message  Click to see TheOmne's MSN Messenger address  Send TheOmne a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
Disclaimer: I have never been to Oval Beach this is all second hand info!

The clothing optional area of Oval Beach is actually not a beach at all, it is an area behind some dunes that is privately owned. When you arrive in the correct place there is a guy in a little shack collecting $5 per person for access to the private area. The clothing optional dunes at Oval Beach IS NOT FAMILY FRIENDLY!!! There is rumored to be a considerable amount of open sexual activity here, heterosexual and homosexual activities. The area is supposedly divided into several areas, the gay area, the straight area and the nudist area. Again, you can't skinny dip here, all the beaches on the Great Lakes in Michigan have been declared PUBLIC so if you were to leave the private dunes you would be on a public beach and likely to get caught. There are several private residences in the immediate area that are fighting to have the C/O area of Oval closed but are not having much luck.

Hope that helps.



Country: USA | Posts: 16 Go to Top of Page

djbetter
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Posted - 08/17/2007 :  9:48:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I've been to this beach several times, but the last time was in 2005. I'm really curious if it's still around though - will be moving to the West Michigan area shortly and want to go back! I don't feel like driving all the way there just to find out they closed the nude beach area. To get to the "clothing optional" area, head to Oval Beach and park as far north as you can get. As you're looking at the water on the main part of the beach, there should be an area to your right (that is, north) that has a small wooden shack with a guy sitting outside collecting money (last I checked it was $10 to gain access to the "private beach" area). Then you have to walk maybe 1/4 mile or so until you see an orange post. On the actual water-front "beach" itself you have to keep your clothes on, but it's the rolling dunes and woods BEHIND the beach that are clothing-optional. Again, if anyone has been to Saugatuk in 2007 and knows if this area is still open, please post!



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Bill Bowser
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Posted - 08/17/2007 :  11:35:49 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Three weeks ago, a friend took me to a beach in the Saugatuck Dunes State Park where we were able to spend a Sunday afternoon nude along with several other like-minded folks. Although this beach is not officially designated clothing-optional it seems to be understood by many of the locals to be so.

From what I've been told, the park rangers mostly look the other way unless there are complaints. We didn't encounter any rangers, so I don't know what would have happened if we did.

I don't know where Oval Beach is, but where we were was maybe two miles north of the Saugatuck inlet.

The previous Sunday we spent an afternoon on another lake Michigan nude beach just south of Empire in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore. My understanding is that this beach is on Federal property and has more of an official standing as a C/O beach, but I don't know for sure. We were there during the running of some apparently well-known (but not to us) foot race that included running a few miles north along the lake shore. I was told that the runners had been advised the they would be passing through a C/O beach. We encountered numerous nudists and lots of runners, but no park rangers or other authorities.

I know very little else about nude beaches in Michigan, but my friend has been frequenting them for about 25 years. If you have any specific questions e-mail me, and I'll ask.

Bill



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djbetter
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Posted - 08/18/2007 :  2:48:45 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Good news! (I think) Someone at a resort nearby in Saugatuck who I emailed replied back and said that yes, the land north of Oval Beach did sell last year to a new owner - BUT he's kept it as it's been for many years; that is, as a clothing-optional private beach. There's still the "guard shack" and the cover charge, but nothing has changed. Woo hoo!


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djbetter
Forum Member

Posted - 05/25/2008 :  3:45:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great news! The nude beach in Saugatuck, MI is alive and kicking. I just came from there yesterday (and have the sunburn to prove it, haha) and the property manager even asked me to "spread the word" that they are NOT closed because of all the controversy, and YES the dunes about 1/4 mile north of the public Oval Beach area is a "clothing optional" section. It's $5 on weekdays and $8 on weekends for parking, and the cost to actually get into the "private beach area" of the park is $5 per person - see the map I made for more details. See you all at the dunes!






Edited by - djbetter on 03/03/2009 2:11:10 PM

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djbetter
Forum Member

Posted - 05/25/2008 :  3:48:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here's another map, this one took me a lot longer to make, but hopefully it'll help some people find the area of the beach better. If you're like me, you're kinda nervous going to a place like this for the first time (is this the right place? how come no one else is naked? where am I? etc) so print out the map in color if you want and share it with any fellow nudists :)








Edited by - djbetter on 03/03/2009 2:12:00 PM

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birthdaysuiter
New Member

Posted - 06/29/2008 :  09:28:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all the info on the Oval Beach area! Does the property owner have a website or anything so I can confirm it is okay to be nude? Everyone I talk to says this is no longer a nude area and that I would be arrested for being nude. It's not that I don't trust your word, but I want to make darn certain before I make the 3 hour drive to the beach.


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slick214
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Posted - 06/30/2008 :  7:39:51 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nice info on the private beach but I am interested in hearing more about the Saug. state park that BareBill talks about on his 8/17/07 post. Anybody been there? If so please tell me about it!




Country: USA | Posts: 54 Go to Top of Page

n/a
deleted

Posted - 08/07/2008 :  6:01:52 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by BareBill

Three weeks ago, a friend took me to a beach in the Saugatuck Dunes State Park where we were able to spend a Sunday afternoon nude along with several other like-minded folks. Although this beach is not officially designated clothing-optional it seems to be understood by many of the locals to be so.

From what I've been told, the park rangers mostly look the other way unless there are complaints. We didn't encounter any rangers, so I don't know what would have happened if we did.

I don't know where Oval Beach is, but where we were was maybe two miles north of the Saugatuck inlet.

The previous Sunday we spent an afternoon on another lake Michigan nude beach just south of Empire in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake Shore. My understanding is that this beach is on Federal property and has more of an official standing as a C/O beach, but I don't know for sure. We were there during the running of some apparently well-known (but not to us) foot race that included running a few miles north along the lake shore. I was told that the runners had been advised the they would be passing through a C/O beach. We encountered numerous nudists and lots of runners, but no park rangers or other authorities.

I know very little else about nude beaches in Michigan, but my friend has been frequenting them for about 25 years. If you have any specific questions e-mail me, and I'll ask.

Bill


Be careful at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Wife and I got a $375.00 for being nude on the beach. There was nobody for miles with the exception of one other couple a few hundred feet away. The rangers came out of the woods at the top of the bluff. Who knows how long they had been watching us.



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slick214
Forum Member

Posted - 08/10/2008 :  07:45:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the 08 update of Otter Creek Beach. I had heard they were cracking down last year and another couple was fined $250. Even when we were there early in the year people had binoculars to watch for the ranger creeping in from the dunes. I don't understand why the little city of Empire would not welcome the extra business from skinny dippers leaving Otter Creek Beach. We went to Fred's Bar after the beach and would not know it existed if we had not gone to OCB. We love going into the little town on Union City when we go to Turtle Lake Resort. The locals know (suspect)we are camping there and treat us very well. (also we are good tippers and love mom and pop resaurants).




Country: USA | Posts: 54 Go to Top of Page

limantour
New Member

Posted - 08/28/2008 :  11:45:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Go to SaugatuckDunesCoastalAlliance.org to get the skinny on what's going on with this land.
The new owner is a billionaire who seems unfriendly to alternative anything and quite sure that his wealth proves his moral superiority.



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notanlinesny
New Member

Posted - 08/31/2008 :  8:37:53 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Made a trip out to this beach today 8/31/08.

I am a regular from Gunnison Beach, NJ and am visiting family.

I am a straight male.

There is NO nude beach at this site. NO clothing optional. They even have a sign posted where you pay that nudity is illegal!

That being said, the part of the beach where you have to pay is 90% gay men.

The area posted here in the satalitte photos in the dunes, is simply a gay cruising zone and most of the gay men cruising in the dunes had thier clothes on. I saw one and only one topless woman.

If there were no straight nudists there. And today was a perfect day 87, totally sunny and a holiday weekend.

I did see gay men having sex in the dunes and lurking around on all of the trails.

This place reminds me of the dunes between "The Pines" & "Cherry Grove" on Fire Island, NY.

JUST GAY CRUSING!



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djbetter
Forum Member

Posted - 08/31/2008 :  9:08:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
notanlinesny, i guess you're technically right in that it's not really a nude "beach" per se. The clothing-optional area is in the sand dunes just behind the actual beach. They put up those signs as a "c.y.a." thing for liability -- and if you read the wording carefully, they're technically correct. They say that PUBLIC nudity will result in your arrest. And yes, the Lake Michigan shoreline and first few feet of sand (i.e. the BEACH) is indeed public property, owned by the city/twp/state/etc. But the land BEYOND that is private property, so you can be as nude as you want to and no one will care. As far as the gay cruising, yeah that goes on but whaddaya gonna do? Balance it out a bit by taking some of your straight nudist friends along next time you come out. Us gays are trendsetters, we are - but we have nothing against hetero's or even *gasp* women getting naked out here *lol* I was just out at Oval Beach yesterday in fact, and there was quite a good crowd. I don't let myself be bothered by who else is out there, or their sexual orientation or how they get their jollies. I just concentrate on my own enjoyment, enjoying the natural liberating freedom of sun, surf, and no tan lines. (My favorite book, a pack of cigarettes, some tunes on the boom box, and a cooler full of drinks - and I'm in paradise!)


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bucknekkid
New Member

Posted - 03/03/2009 :  12:56:30 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bump. Any news about the status of Oval Beach for this year (I know it's early, but I'm originally from down south, so I'm used to getting an early start)? I'm working in Grand Rapids this summer and looking forward to spending some weekends out there, but I've heard rumors elsewhere on the web that the local government may be purchasing the land and putting an end to the c/o area.

Hopefully it will still be open and I can meet some you sunning Michiganders this season.



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djbetter
Forum Member

Posted - 03/03/2009 :  2:10:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
bucknekkid - I have a sinking feeling we may have seen the last of the clothing-optional area at Oval Beach :( The last time I was there in late summer '08 the caretaker of the property, a guy named Ted, said the new owner of the parcel Aubrey McClendon (that rich conservative billionaire from Seattle) wanted close down public access to the nude beach area, even starting Labor Day of last year. But he was persuaded to leave it open until the end of the summer. Ted made it sound like this was the final hurrah for nudists to come out and enjoy the beautiful property before it's fenced off. Now things may have changed since then, and I could be completely wrong, so we'll just have to see how things go I guess.


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