Michigan Trails Week: Bike Leelanau

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Bike Leelanau is getting Leelanau County rolling!

One of the most exciting things in northern Michigan is happening in a place that, just two years ago, hadn’t seen mountain biking in a long, long time. While the classic NORBA races at Sugar Loaf were a pinnacle of the sport in the Midwest, when those events went away, mountain biking nearly left, too.

No more. The folks at Bike Leelanau are building something special. The first step came this past winter, with volunteers and sponsors helping to open up groomed fat bike trails at the Leelanau State Park near Northport. With great reactions, the momentum began to build for an ambitious project, Palmer Woods. After working to being in donations and grants, Palmer Woods is taking shape right now on Wheeler Road, just a short ride outside of Glen Arbor. The professional, machine-built trails are going to be finished up this fall, and it’s sure to be a destination trail for years to come.

In addition to winter fat biking and summer shredding at Palmer Woods, there’s also plenty of work on the horizon with Echo Valley, a proposed trail system south of Glen Lake that is awaiting an environmental study and more ecological review before it can be moved forward.

There are plenty of awesome things in place right now, too. 45 North Vineyard and Winery has served as the race and ride hub for the County, offering year-round trails for mountain bikers who want a place to throw down laps without the long drive to Traverse City. Bike Leelanau also offers a bike library for kids and families, as well as events to get County residents moving.

For more on Bike Leelanau, make sure you check the site and follow along on Facebook and Instagram.