Ford Forest

Welcome to the Ford Forest

The Ford Forest is the School’s natural field laboratory and classroom, located in and around the Village of Alberta, MI. The forest is home to long-term field studies, a range of applied and basic research in natural resources, educational programs tied to the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, and is also a demonstration site for advanced sustainable forest management practices in the Upper Great Lakes forest region.

The forest is comprised of a major landholding in and around the village of Alberta, totaling nearly 3,700 acres, located 42 miles south of MTU’s main campus on US Highway 41. The forest also includes another 1,200 acres of satellite properties throughout the Upper Peninsula. The core tract is bisected by the Sturgeon River, and contains both upland northern hardwood and outwash plain jack pine forests, with minor components of lowland conifer, natural red pine, and pure aspen forest.

Research on the forest includes a range of current and historic studies in silviculture, forest management, wildlife, ecosystem science, tree physiology, hydrology, and soil science, among other ecosystem services. The forest is also home to the School’s unique field-based Integrated Field Practicum (a.k.a. fall camp). The Forest is a strategic asset that plays an important roles in education, research, and demonstration.