Michigander Trail Spotlight: Little Traverse Wheelway

6 06 2013

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One of the featured trails on this year’s Michigander is the Little Traverse Wheelway. Riders choosing the 2-day and 7-day option will get a chance to ride along this 28-mile route, spanning from Charlevoix to Harbor Springs.

Beginning on Saturday, July 13th, 2 and 7 day riders will start in Harbor Springs. From there they will ride the 28 miles along the trail to Charlevoix. For the duration of the ride, riders will be treated with a spectacular view of Lake Michigan. The “Bike Path”, as it is locally called, runs from Charlevoix to Harbor Springs in Charlevoix and Emmet Counties. The trail is mostly dedicated and mostly asphalt. It provides exciting changes of scenery—including many views over sparkling Lake Michigan—as it winds from Charlevoix to the northern outskirts of Petoskey and eventually to Harbor Springs. Most of the route is paved, with several sections on boardwalk, sidewalk and area roads.

It is currently the best developed and most suburban of our trunk line trails. The part between Petoskey’s Bayfront Park to Petoskey State Park follows closely the path of the original LTW that stretched from Petoskey to Harbor Springs in the 1880s and 90s. A gate over the trail at the east end of Bayfront Park replicates the original gate that stood at nearly the same spot. Two other identical gates have been built to the west on Petoskey’s portion of the trail.

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In late 2008 construction was completed on the 1.4 mile “Resort Bluffs” segment between East Park in Bay Harbor and Magnus Park in Petoskey. This new trail replaces the “road shoulder “segment that had forced users up onto US 31. In January 2009, the Little Traverse Wheelway was the Rails to Trails Conservancy Trail of the Month.

To learn more about the Little Traverse Wheelway, read about it here. The Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance is proud to have this wonderfully scenic route as part of the 2013 Michigander. We hope you enjoy it, as well!

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