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Michigan Dept Natural Resources Bike Trail and Hiking

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Michigan Dept Natural Resources Bike Trail and Hiking

Old 02-04-15, 06:34 PM
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Garfield Cat
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Michigan Dept Natural Resources Bike Trail and Hiking

any Michigan people know of this plan?

DNR - FAQ about the new Michigan trail from Belle Isle to Ironwood

DNR - FAQ about the new Michigan trail from Belle Isle to Ironwood

The draft of the route: https://www.michigan.gov/documents/dn...e_469159_7.pdf
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Old 02-06-15, 11:28 AM
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Yup. A friend on facebook posted it last week.
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Old 02-20-15, 04:03 PM
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Is your post more of an inquiry (your location does say California, so for example, riding around the area is not something you do say every week), an announcement (just letting others know), or both?

I read articles that referenced the governor of Michigan a few years ago, wanting to basically construct missing links and market it for its economic benefits. Other articles have referenced that it would be a trail that becomes more connected, as in linking already existing infrastructure with new infrastructure.

Trail naming: I meant to submit several names for this trail as there was a contest, but just forgot to send them in as I was still thinking of names. I suppose it’s a slight relief none of those I thought of didn’t get selected.

Interim Map: Does anyone at all interested in this trail system think the party responsible for overseeing this project would ultimately rather have segments of the route be less tentative but instead: either more complete or very likely to be completed as planned (with both land and funding secured), before making a map that’s more precise as far as location of the trails?

I wanted to offer my full thoughts about either a 3rd party (like individuals using Google Maps) or suggesting those responsible for the project consider using Google (creating a user map that can be shared) to make an interim map, since it’s a lot more detailed and has other data (on-street view, nearby places, user submitted photos).

Granted, a person viewing such a Google user map wouldn’t be able to for example, determine more precisely the distance for a segment that is not yet complete when using directions, since it would be drawn with a line feature, so I'm not sure it would really be worth the time. It would also of course require more specific data if done by a third party. Some of the data in the map is rather unclear, as far as location (hence a large part of the reason for the map).

It’s interesting to me that they have a “hiking-proposed rail” labeled in an area that’s more Downriver, when I would think that’d be either biking proposed, or even hike/bike proposed. There’s nowhere I can think of to be hiking that appears to be within that distance and width shown, within River Rouge, Ecorse and Wyandotte. I usually think of hiking as being an activity that is in somewhat more rural areas (more like southern Trenton, Gibraltar and further south), mostly non-developed, not a somewhat downtrodden suburban area.

Last edited by DTownDave22; 02-22-15 at 11:05 AM.
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Old 02-27-15, 09:59 PM
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Originally Posted by DTownDave22 View Post

It’s interesting to me that they have a “hiking-proposed rail” labeled in an area that’s more Downriver, when I would think that’d be either biking proposed, or even hike/bike proposed. There’s nowhere I can think of to be hiking that appears to be within that distance and width shown, within River Rouge, Ecorse and Wyandotte. I usually think of hiking as being an activity that is in somewhat more rural areas (more like southern Trenton, Gibraltar and further south), mostly non-developed, not a somewhat downtrodden suburban area.
Theres not really any good way to get from Belle aisle to the North Country Trail (which is what makes up the majority of the Iron Belle hiking trail) when it comes to hiking.

I've been trying to find a more detailed map of the proposed bike trail but I have found nothing. I'd like to ride the trail from Belle Isle to Mackinaw this year, but with no detailed map that is looking less likely.
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Old 03-01-15, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by gremlin75 View Post
Theres not really any good way to get from Belle aisle to the North Country Trail (which is what makes up the majority of the Iron Belle hiking trail) when it comes to hiking.

I've been trying to find a more detailed map of the proposed bike trail but I have found nothing. I'd like to ride the trail from Belle Isle to Mackinaw this year, but with no detailed map that is looking less likely.
Hi Gremlin,

Thatís quite an undertaking!

First of all, before I were to make any suggestions or ask any other questions: Are you implying you are looking to ride as close to the line of travel of the proposed trail as possible, for the most part, from Belle Isle to Mackinac Island?

For example, riding on nearby roads in place of where there are to-be-completed off-road trails/paths or riding on roads (or very close to those roads) where there are to be bike lanes, etc.?

I won't speak about any hiking trails as I know nothing about them.
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Old 03-01-15, 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by DTownDave22 View Post
First of all, before I were to make any suggestions or ask any other questions: Are you implying you are looking to ride as close to the line of travel of the proposed trail as possible, for the most part, from Belle Isle to Mackinac Island?

For example, riding on nearby roads in place of where there are to-be-completed off-road trails/paths or riding on roads (or very close to those roads) where there are to be bike lanes, etc.?
Yes. From what I can tell there are quite a few bike/multi use trails used in the iron belle trail. At this point Im considering any uncompleted sections, between these already existing trails, as connectors. Im hoping to see the states proposed paths for these connetors and follow that. If I can't find that info then I'm just going to have to figure out connetor paths myself. That should be to difficult, but I'm really hoping the state can save me some leg work

ps. Just realized that my post in this thread was my first post on these forums!
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Old 03-06-15, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by gremlin75 View Post
Yes. From what I can tell there are quite a few bike/multi use trails used in the iron belle trail. At this point Im considering any uncompleted sections, between these already existing trails, as connectors. Im hoping to see the states proposed paths for these connetors and follow that. If I can't find that info then I'm just going to have to figure out connetor paths myself. That should be to difficult, but I'm really hoping the state can save me some leg work

ps. Just realized that my post in this thread was my first post on these forums!


Well, based on what I understand you are saying, you would consider any route between the completed trails, but would prefer to stay on-route on the already completed trails that are going to be designated as part of the Iron Belle Trail. Regarding both the completed sections and to-be-completed sections, youíre not 100% on the route, and would consider any points in between the trails. Is that correct?


I donít know you at all, and Iím not asking for all your personal information, but partly based on curiosity but more so to get an idea of what type of route you might be more comfortable with, I would like to know a few things:
-Roughly how experienced are you riding on the road (approximate years and mileage), particularly here in Metro Detroit (quite a large number of sq. miles I would say)

-How familiar are you with Google Maps (ďclassicĒ or newest version)?

-How many miles would you estimate youíve ridden on roads with higher speed limits (40MPH and above) and 1-lane each way (with or without a left-turn lane)?


I am asking these questions because this isnít the type of thing just anyone would do. You did state this as part of a post:
Originally Posted by gremlin75 View Post
I'd like to ride the trail from Belle Isle to Mackinaw this year, but with no detailed map that is looking less likely.
Iím not sure if that is consecutively (day-to-day), or spread out. If itís consecutively, like it would appear to be based on your primary question, Iím not sure making an attempt to reflect a route, where the gaps of infrastructure have yet to be filled in, is something a lot of people do, but primarily because it may not seem that safe, nor does that mean Iím saying ďYou shouldnít do this.Ē I'm not.

Safety: I am caught up a bit on the thought of riding on extended lengths (Iím talking 10, 20, or more miles) on more rural roads that have all the characteristics I try to avoid. Roads with lack of wide/ride-able shoulders with only 1-lane each way (w/ or without left-turn lanes) is not entirely enjoyable to me. I do so rarely. I'd have to put in more time looking at the roads in between the trails, to see what they are like. Most roads in areas outside of major metropolitan areas/lower population density have roads that are 1-lane each way.

Just personally, it unnerves me when riding on such roads, even more so than most suburban roads, because of that decreased safety barrier to pass a cyclist.

Add in variables people seem to be dealing with to a greater extent today: lack of time and patience (greater tendency to speed as well as more easily getting away with speeding in areas with fewer people and as a result, fewer cops), distractions (like cell phones), increased stress, etc, and I feel vulnerable not to mention like a tiny bit of a nuisance with people having to pass me (not extremely so though). Thatís where mirrors (I prefer helmet mirrors) come in handy but it only helps so much.

Larger groups of people touring are probably a bit easier to see on the road, and Iím not implying individuals and groups do not undertake what you are interested in doing (going on rides this long), or even just riding considerably shorter rides than what you want to undertake on such roads that I tend to avoid . I basically want to get an idea of your experience of overall road riding, but give you an idea of part of the reason just why Iím asking these questions and know where I'm coming from.
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Old 03-07-15, 12:38 AM
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Originally Posted by DTownDave22 View Post
-Roughly how experienced are you riding on the road (approximate years and mileage), particularly here in Metro Detroit (quite a large number of sq. miles I would say)

-How familiar are you with Google Maps (“classic” or newest version)?

-How many miles would you estimate you’ve ridden on roads with higher speed limits (40MPH and above) and 1-lane each way (with or without a left-turn lane)?

Honestly I would consider my road experience is minimal. I've been "riding" since I was a little kid but would consider my actual riding years to start in 1999. That when I get into biking as more then just a mode of transportation. As for mileage in actual road conditions, probably a few hundred. I'm mainly a mountain biker I have a ton more trail miles and bike path/bike lane miles then actual road miles.

Love google maps. Use it a ton. Even use it to make out Kayak trips. The point to point milage feature rocks!

Most of my road miles have come on 40+mph roads....mainly Eureka near the airport. I can't think of any that have come on just two lane roads.


I'm not concerned too much with safety. I have been hit before and had a few near misses. I've also been nearly killed in a parking lot while talking to a friend. So bad things happen no matter what you're doing or where you're going. But sharing roads with a-hole drivers is always a risk, thats why I went with the super bright orange panniers for my touring bike

I think I'm more concerned with the fact that it looks like the path goes through Flint......Michigan does have the open carry law though
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Old 03-08-15, 07:21 AM
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Yes, I am in California. But a friend sent me the link to the MI Dept Natl Resources and I am interested in going to Mackinac Island. While in MI, I thought "maybe" there are other places to visit for hiking more thank biking. I suppose all these articles of proposed trails would take decades before they become a reality.

There's got to be like a "top ten" hiking places in MI.
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Old 03-14-15, 01:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
Yes, I am in California. But a friend sent me the link to the MI Dept Natl Resources and I am interested in going to Mackinac Island. While in MI, I thought "maybe" there are other places to visit for hiking more thank biking. I suppose all these articles of proposed trails would take decades before they become a reality.

There's got to be like a "top ten" hiking places in MI.
There are some nice hikes in michigan, but most of them are north of Mackinac. Pictured rocks, Porcupine Mountains, and Isle Royale all have nice hikes. There are some in the Lower Peninsula but most are flat and rather boring. That said I do hike the Manistee river trail once a year, but it's nothing special.
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Old 03-25-15, 09:20 AM
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Michigan's outstanding feature is the most miles of freshwater coast. Which airport (Detroit or Chicago) could be a choice of sunrise or sunset on the water. Lake Erie is famously polluted and Lake St. Clair sometimes has high levels of E. coli, so the better coastal hiking on the east side may start around Algonac or Port Huron.
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