Discover Three Animals Prowling Atop Michigan’s Tallest Mountain

Written by Chanel Coetzee
Updated: June 14, 2023
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Key Points:

  • Michigan’s tallest Mountain is Mount Arvon which is 1,979 feet above sea level and has a view of Lake Superior.
  • Moose live on Mount Arvon and can reach weights of 1,400 pounds.
  • Coyotes and wolves can be found on Michigan’s highest peak and probably compete for prey.


Mount Arvon forms part of the Huron Mountains and is considered the highest natural point in Michigan in the United States. Furthermore, it is 1,979 feet above sea level, leaving it just short of mountain status, which is 2,000 feet. Located in the L’Anse township, it has a magnificent view of Lake Superior. Additionally, it is a few miles away from Mount Curwood, which until recently was considered the highest point in Michigan. Mount Arvon is privately owned by a paper company named MeadWestvaco, but access to the public is permitted. But do you know what animals are prowling atop Michigans’s tallest mountain?

view from the top of arvon

This view is from the highest point in Michigan, Mount Arvon.

©Yinan Chen / Public Domain – License

1. Moose

The moose is one of the animals prowling atop Michigan’s tallest mountain. They are part of the deer family and have large heads and huge antlers. On the other hand, in Europe, moose are known as elk. Moose occur in Alaska, the Rocky Mountain region of the United States, and Canada. Additionally, they are also found in the northern parts of Asia and Europe. These animals favor habitats close to lakes, ponds, and rivers. They are gigantic and can reach seven feet high, and weigh more than 1,400 pounds. Their fur appears deep brown and thick, yet it can also appear black or reddish at times. Interestingly, their antlers can measure more than five feet, and every year the males will lose their antlers and grow them back. As they grow back, they are coated with a velvet protective layer, which eventually rubs off.

These animals have a wonderful sense of smell and hearing, but they don’t have the best eyesight. Additionally, they can swim well. Their diet consists of the following:

  • Herbs
  • Twigs
  • Bark
  • Grasses
  • Water plants, such as water lilies and pondweed
Rocky Mountain Moose

Moose roam Alaska, the Rocky Mountain region of the United States, and Canada.

©Michael Liggett/

2. Wolves

Wolves also occur atop Michigan’s tallest mountain. They are known for their courage and intellect. Furthermore, they belong to the dog family. Additionally, they can travel long distances. The most common wolf is the Timber wolf or gray wolf, which lives in North America, Asia, and Europe. Male wolves are larger than females and can weigh more than 100 pounds. Their fur is black, red, or brown, with yellow or white bellies. Wolves are such good hunters; Native Americans named some of their best warriors after these large canines.

Red wolves were once considered a different species, but scientists now believe they are a cross between a coyote and a gray wolf. Most red wolves live in captivity but occur in the southeastern parts of the US. Their fur is a sandy or reddish-brown color. Furthermore, they weigh around 80 pounds or more. 

Wolves are very sociable animals and live in packs. A pack typically consists of a bonded pair and their offspring. Furthermore, the two adults are known as the alpha pair. Wolves are more active at night, and they hunt in groups. Their diets consist of the following:

  • Mice
  • Squirrels
  • Deer
  • Moose
Grey wolf looks straight ahead

The most common wolf is the Timber wolf or gray wolf, which lives in North America, Asia, and Europe.

©AB Photographie/

3. Coyotes

Coyotes are very clever and form part of the dog family. These cunning animals occur throughout the United States. Furthermore, they inhabit areas close to people, like the outskirts of cities.

Coyotes look very similar to wolves but are smaller and only weigh up to fifty pounds. In addition, their fur is long and thick; it has a grayish-brown color with white running down the throat and belly. Their tails are bushy and have a black tip.

Coyotes are more active at night. Therefore, they hunt in the dark, usually alone. They also eat dead animals and plants. Furthermore, if they do hunt together, they are called a pack and might target something like sheep. They communicate through a series of yaps, howls, and barks.

coyote in sunlight

Coyotes look very similar to wolves but are smaller and only weigh up to fifty pounds.

©Mircea Costina/

Other Animals That Occur on the Tallest Mountain In Michigan

Animals found in and around the Arvon Mountains include:

  • Cougars
  • Mink
  • White-tailed deer
  • Red foxes
  • Beavers
  • River otters
  • Black bears
  • Porcupines.

Plant Species Found Around Mount Arvon

There are many tree species on and around Michigan’s tallest mountain, considered the state’s highest natural point. They include maple, beech, cedar, and spruce trees.

Maple Trees

Maple trees and shrubs are frequently planted in city streets and parks. Primarily, their leaves form a thick covering providing excellent shade. Additionally, they offer a spectacular show in autumn, as their leaves turn pink, orange, yellow, and deep purple. Maple trees occur throughout North America, north-eastern Asia, and Europe, with over 200 varied species.

These magnificent trees can grow to be more than 130 feet tall. However, they can range from small shrubs to gigantic trees. In early spring, beautiful deep red or greenish-yellow flowers appear. Maple trees have finger-like sections called lobes. Additionally, they have wings containing seeds that fall to the ground and spread seeds that can grow into new maple trees.

These trees grow in the United States and Canada. Furthermore, maple syrup and sugar come from their sap which people collect in late winter or early spring. They do this by cutting holes in the tree trunk and collecting the sap. In the end, they boil the sap to make it thicker. Lastly, some species, like the sugar maple, are used to provide wood for furniture and other goods.

Beech Trees

Beech trees are popular all over the world because of their colorful leaves and the shade they provide. They grow in many parts of the world, including North America, Asia, and Europe. Other species include the Japanese beech and the Chinese beech. Flooring, furniture, and other goods are made from their reddish-brown wood. Additionally, they provide food for animals as well as cooking oil.

Some of the beech trees that grow south of the equator are known as false beeches or southern beaches. These belong to the species known as Nothofagus. To that end, most false beeches do not lose their leaves. The European and American beech trees can reach up to 100 feet. Also, their bark appears gray and smooth. The leaves of beech trees vary in shape and color. American and European beech trees have oval leaves that come to a point at the end. These leaves are dark green or blueish green. Interestingly, beech trees can live more than 300 years. Furthermore, their flowers develop into prickly burrs that burst open in autumn or summer and release seeds.

Spruce Trees

Spruce trees are evergreen, meaning that they do not lose their leaves. Granted, there are around forty varied species. However, they are popular because of the excellent quality wood they produce. They favor cold climates and occur in North America, Asia, and Europe. Furthermore, they can grow up to 150 feet. Like many evergreen species, they have fragrant, short, pyramid-shaped needles. These needles vary in color from dark and light green to blueish gray and can be banded with white. Also, they can appear four-sided or flat and have sharp points. Lastly, they grow out in all directions of the branches.

Cedar Trees

Cedar trees belong to the pine family and are evergreen. Additionally, their wood is popular because it does not rot easily and has a stunning reddish color and lovely fragrance. There are four types of cedar, three of which originally only grew in the mountains around the Mediterranean Sea. However, they now grow in areas around the world.

Cedar trees can grow up to 100 feet and have wide spreading branches. Their leaves look like needles and grow in groups around the branches. Furthermore, they produce cones that contain seeds. A cedar tree has reddish wood that is very fragrant, and the wood is used to make pencils, closets, and clothing chests. Additionally, oil extracted from the eastern red cedar is used to make perfume. 

The photo featured at the top of this post is © RomanKahler / CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons – License / Original

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About the Author

Chanel Coetzee is a writer at A-Z Animals, primarily focusing on big cats, dogs, and travel. Chanel has been writing and researching about animals for over 10 years. She has also worked closely with big cats like lions, cheetahs, leopards, and tigers at a rescue and rehabilitation center in South Africa since 2009. As a resident of Cape Town, South Africa, Chanel enjoys beach walks with her Stafford bull terrier and traveling off the beaten path.

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