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Biking in Ludington: A Complete Guide

If you love the outdoors, Pure Ludington is the destination for you. Explore the area on two wheels on our trail systems, available for all ages and abilities. Along the way, you will find gorgeous shoreline scenery, delightful wooded paths and charming country roads.

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Scenic Road Routes

Considered one of the most scenic roads in the Midwest, M-116 is popular among cyclists. On one side of the route, there are endless sand dunes and ecosystems; on the other side, Lake Michigan spans the horizon. And, chances are, there will be a breeze off the lake that will help keep you cool on your ride.

A second, beautiful shoreline route runs along South Lakeshore Drive to Bass Lake and Pentwater. A highlight of this route is crossing the bridge that spans the Ludington Pumped Storage Power Plant, a hydroelectric plant and reservoir built on Lake Michigan. The lookout from atop the plant provides one of the most panoramic views of the big lake.IMG_1952.JPG

For a more ambitious tour, chart a course on the way back through the orchards and rolling hills south of Ludington. Riders will be awestruck by the scale of the 56 wind turbines comprising Lakewinds Energy Park.

Paths for Kids

The Cartier Park Pathway on Lincoln Lake in Ludington is an easily accessible, paved one-mile loop with minimal elevation. It is a great cycling destination for families with young children. Kids can also explore fun mountain bike trails through the forest.

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Families also love to discover the many treasures of the Ludington State Park by bike. There are paved paths and roads running throughout the park and along the Sable River between the Lake Michigan Beach area and the Hamlin Dam and beach area. There is also a 1.5-mile gravel road for the adventurous that will lead you to the Big Sable Lighthouse.

Be sure not to miss a casual cruise through Stearns Park Beach and the Ludington harbor during the arrival or departure of the S.S. Badger Carferry in the morning or evening.

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Four Season Mountain Biking

A 10-mile, single-track system through Cartier Park, Memorial Tree Park and the Ludington School Forest within the city limits is designed to create a fun, widely accessible introduction to mountain biking. The trails are intentionally not intimidating for new and novice riders, yet they are designed in a way that even the most experienced mountain biker will find them fun and enjoyable.

During the winter months especially, fat-tire mountain biking has become a popular trend, providing an exhilarating way to take in Michigan’s snowy wonderland. Several trail systems in the area are groomed for winter riding. Check here for information on trail conditions.

Riding at the beach during the winter can also be a thrill. When the snow melts, fat bikes are just as fun on traditional trails. 

North of Ludington, cyclists can enjoy one of the longest fat bike trails in the Lower Peninsula, also known as the Big M. This well-marked, loop trail system sweeps through canopied hardwoods of the Manistee National Forest, which connects with the North Country Trail system. The 38-mile loop trail system offers a variety of terrain for every cycling level, including 25 miles of singletrack mountain-biking open from April to September, and an 18-mile track groomed for fat biking in winter.

For current information on local bicycling routes, maps, group rides and cycling related events, visit www.shorelinecyclingclub.org or stop in to Spindrift Cyclesports or Trailhead Bike Shop. Both are located on Ludington Avenue in downtown Ludington for all of your biking needs and rentals.



 


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