Working To Bring Fat Bike Trails To Leelanau State Park

A map of Leelanau State Park. The trails are not mapped here. 

A map of Leelanau State Park. The trails are not mapped here. 

Everyone loves fat biking, and we're working to bring winter riding even to another Northern Michigan town, Northport! 

A number of locals, as well as representatives from the DNR and Leelanau State Park are eager to get a winter-only fat bike trail in place this season, even with the snow already beginning to fall. We're sending our Vasa Singletrack Director, Chad Jordan, as well as a few other volunteers north again this weekend to help map and outline a 7-9 mile groomed trail that could be ready to ride this winter! 

The trail system is adjacent to another set of trails that have always been referred to as the "Airport Beach" trails, near Woolsey "International" Airport just north of the village of Northport. The new fat bike trails will overlap for two miles before veering off into its own network. The goal is to create a better trail experience for all users, which include classic skiers and snowshoers. There are plans to submit a trail proposal that could, in a few years, create a year-round mountain bike trail system to be in place. 

It's a project that we hope can have a big impact on the area. The goal is to have these trails draw people north in the same way that Glacial Hills help support the community of Bellaire. It will also serve as a way to gauge interest and support of summer trails as well. 

Much of the groundwork for this project has been by Will and Rachel, owners of Northshore Outfitters. They've been avid skiers and bikers for decades and love calling Northport home. Will has already volunteered a snowmobile for grooming, as well as his own time to keep the new trail open. He's called on a few pals from NMMBA to help make the trail ready as soon as this weekend, clearing deadfall and other debris to make things clear for the drag once the snow sticks. 

This is a very exciting project that has pulled locals, the DNR, and NMMBA together to create what will be another reason to travel to Northport and help that community grow, as well as a number of other villages in Leelanau County. We will keep you up-to-date on the trail as it develops, and we hope to add grooming reports, updates, and how you can support the trail on our website in the coming weeks!