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E-M:/ toxic state park



The White Pine Trail, a linear state park running from Grand Rapids to Cadillac remains, at least in its northern section, a potential threat to public health.  The MDNR has known for some time, based on tests performed by the MDEQ, that the trail surface has high levels of arsenic and two other restricted compounds.  When weather conditions are dry, a solo bike rider will become covered with fine black dust from the old rairoad grade.   Group rides are an exercise in self-destruction for all but the lead rider.  The shoes of walkers become blackened and those who walk their pets are exposing fido to direct arsenic absorption.
The DNR has stated it will not pave the north end of the trail unless snowmobile studs are banned.  There are ways to seal a surface other than with pavement and it's unfortunate that snowmobiles - who use the trail for 2-3 months of the year dictate its condition.  The DNR will use its resources to construct a covered bridge along the trail yet allows a possible health threat to persist. 
This issue was covered by newspapers statewide last year (or perhaps earlier).  Apparently nothing is being done.  The state is issuing recreational grants, Clean Michigan Initiative money is rolling out to numerous projects, but the DNR is not tending its own house.
m stone