Five Reasons to Love Mountain Biking in the Upper Peninsula

Did you know that May is National Bike Month? To celebrate, we asked guest blogger Jessica Watson to tell us about her experience mountain biking in Copper Harbor. Here are five reasons to love mountain biking in the Upper Peninsula.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 12.47.27 PMAs a beginner mountain biker, I was a little nervous about going to Copper Harbor last summer. After all, their trail system is rated Silver by the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA), one of only four world-wide, and some of the trails will make your heart skip a beat, even if you are watching someone else do it from your computer room.

There is nothing to fear though, only an amazing, adventurous trip with biking through some of the most beautiful scenery that Michigan has to offer.

Let me share with you the five reasons why you should visit.

1. There are people there to help you, and they’re awesome people who drive you to the top of the mountains, fit you with a rental bike and help you get started by recommending trails based on your skill level. Find them at the Keweenaw Adventure Company.

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Keweenaw Mountain Lodge

2. ‘The Flow’ is hands down the most fun I have ever had, ever. Before I went I read online that you wouldn’t be able to wipe the smile off your face after The Flow, those people were right. And what’s great is that anyone can do it. The challenges in that trail make it fun for a beginner and an expert, depending on how fast you go.

3. When you get back from a long day on the trails, there are plenty of places to eat. Some of the food there simply blew my mind. I was not expecting any top notch meals during my trip, but I was so wrong. My favorite spots were the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge (I recommend the Spinach artichoke dip) and the Harbor Haus. They even have a microbrewery in town, Brickside Brewery. They offer an awesome ‘taste test’ platter, just make sure you have a ride back to your hotel or campground.

View from Harbor Haus

View from Harbor Haus

4. You see some amazing people do some amazing things. When we normal people are going down The Flow, we see a piece of one of the newest trails, Overflow, which is a double black diamond. Even though I can’t do it (yet), it’s cool to watch the experts fly by.

5. They have a Ladies Weekend. As a beginner, female rider, I think this is awesome. The event is a full weekend of riding with professional coaches and all aimed at helping women improve their skills.

Have you been mountain biking in the Upper Peninsula? Where did you go?

Jessica Watson Head ShotJessica Watson is a resident of Algonac, Mich. and loves to spend her summers outside on the boat or on a bike. New to mountain biking, she is learning the ropes quickly and looking to experience new rides in her home state. Last year she tried out Copper Harbor and this year Boyne Mountain is on her list.

Biking in Pure Michigan

Did you know that May is National Bike Month? In honor of that, we thought it would be fun to roundup some of Michigan’s bike trails. With more than 1,300 miles of bike trails of Pure Michigan, there are plenty of options to explore.

To learn more about biking in Michigan, visit michigan.org.

Paint Creek Trail
From the City of Rochester north through the City of Rochester Hills, Oakland Township, Orion Township, and the Village of Lake Orion, the Paint Creek Trail follows the Paint Creek as it meanders through fields, prairies, woodlands, and marshlands. Approximately 8.9 miles long by 8 feet wide, the trail’s all-weather limestone surface makes it ideal for year-round activity.

Potawatomi Trail
The Pinckney Recreation Area is an ideal destination for picnicking, fishing, boating, and of course – bike riding along the Potawatomi Trail. The area includes modern campsites, rustic camping and backpack camping along the trail, making it the perfect spot for a weekend long adventure.

Bald Mountain Loops
If you’re interested in mountain biking, check out the Bald Mountain Loops at the Bald Mountain Recreation Area. The picturesque park area has some of the steepest hills and most rugged terrain in southeastern Michigan, and includes 15 miles of marked hiking and biking trails.

Copper Harbor Trails
Award-winning Copper Harbor Trails offers a variety of natural obstacles, challenging climbs and fun downhills. Located at the northern tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula, riders can enjoy scenic streams, woods and rock bluffs along the trails.

Lakeshore Trail
The Lakeshore Trail offers riders scenery of Lake Michigan, Muskegon Lake, dunes, parks, and the City of Muskegon. The nearly 10 mile, paved Lakeshore Trail is designed to provide users a convenient, relaxing and safe cycling environment, ideal for beginners with plenty of places to park and rest along the trail. The trail also gives riders pedestrian access to historic and maritime attractions, dining venues, lodging options and seasonal festivals.

Michigan: Timeless Beauty

Wendy McNamara from Eaton Rapids shares her experiences on the open road across Michigan as her “Pure Michigan Moment.”

Three years ago, a group of us from the Gold Wing Road Riders rode from southwest Michigan to the Upper Peninsula in search of adventure.

We rode to the Mackinac Bridge for the “Midnight Ride,” an annual juvenile diabetes fund-raiser. It was 45 degrees at dawn as 600 motorcyclists rode across the bridge. It was exhilarating and awesome.

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