Top Bike Trails in Southeast Michigan
These paths provide a natural cure for boredom and perfect opportunity to get your family on the fast track to a healthier lifestyle. Get the details for 2014-15.
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A four-mile paved bike/hike trail offers scenic views of the Huron River and some of the 1,258 acres of natural woodlands at this Belleville park. Got older kids with some real steam to burn off? Continue the route through Willow and Oakwoods Metroparks for a total 30-mile round trip! Requires a $7/vehicle day pass or $30/annual (allows access to all other 13 Huron-Clinton Metroparks, too).
Canton residents, this one's for you! On a combination of dirt and paved routes, visitors enjoy smooth leisure riding – or, if you prefer, mountain biking on tougher terrain. This trail runs from Canton Center Road to Haggerty Road and connects Heritage Park and the I-275 Metro Trail.
Take in plenty of urban and wooded beauty on this path that connects Romeo and Armada on paved, generally flat terrain. It crosses the Clinton River and offers a 180-mile stretch of trails.
Set in Northville Township, this park offers both leisurely biking (there's a four-mile paved trail) and mountain biking (there's a special spot for this called the Yellow Trail; closed Dec. 15-April 15). You can also fish, horseback ride, hike and lots more here. Michigan Recreation Passport required, which is $11/year.
Featuring a cool "waterfall" view (created by a dam), this five-mile trail is rated moderate for those with experience and biking skills. Family ready for a little mount-bike challenge? Try to make it from its beginning on Commerce Road all the way to the end at the Kensington Metropark entrance.
Bikers love this New Boston three-mile trail for its easy ride, thanks to a flat terrain and grassy meadows. The interpretive trails are also appealing with scenic views of the Huron River. This 1,756-acre park near Flat Rock continues on, connecting with 12 more miles of paved hike/bike trails in Willow and Lower Huron metroparks (it all adds up to 30 miles of biking round trip!). Requires a $7/vehicle day pass or $30/annual (allows access to all other 13 Huron-Clinton Metroparks, too).
This is a prime spot for those in northeast Oakland County. With eight parking locations along its 8.9-mile span, this trail connecting Rochester, Rochester Hills, Oakland Township, Orion Township and the Village of Lake Orion draws more than 100,000 visitors each year. Features three bike stops. Check website for latest trail conditions (a bridge on the Orion Road stretch was under construction and due to be replaced by August 2014).
Polly Ann connects three townships – Orion, Oxford and Addison – and a pair of villages (Oxford and Leonard). It all creates a 14.2-mile route through Oakland County. Touches on a variety of recreational and public places. It's open dawn to dusk all year. Hint: The Blanka Trailhead in Leonard is the best place to park, complete with rest rooms.
Crossing an array of ponds, roads and boat launches, this trail has stops for bikers, too. With scenic views of historic buildings and forestry, it also features seven river miles of adventure stretching across cities like Holly and Fenton. Future developments will result in extended trips through other areas of Genesee County, the popular cities of Owosso, Saginaw Bay and many others.
With a tad more than six miles of paved trail and 14 miles of hilly, "heavily wooded" dirt terrain prime for mountain bikers, this popular Shelby Township-area park offers something for every biker. Helmets are a must, and you can even rent bikes here ($10/deposit, $5/men or women's single-speed bike per hour, $20/max deposit per family – Memorial Day-Labor Day only). Requires a $7/vehicle day pass or $30/annual (allows access to all other 13 Huron-Clinton Metroparks, too).
This 54-acre park runs through the West Bloomfield area for nearly seven miles, including Orchard Lake and Keego Harbor. With trailheads extending from Sylvan Manor Park to Haggerty Road, enjoy a scenic route with benches, bike racks, mileage markers and areas to stop for a picnic lunch. Open 8 a.m.-dusk.
A winding 4.5-mile paved bike path is just the workout for many locals. Located in New Boston near I-275 and I-94, this flat course makes for easing passing through woodlands, Washago pond and views of the Huron River. Bike rentals are available for single-speed and tandem bikes, ranging $5-$6 an hour with a $10 deposit. Requires a $7/vehicle day pass or $30/annual (allows access to all other 13 Huron-Clinton Metroparks, too).