May 8, 2019 | Story by: Nick Danowski
Advanced mountain bikers, cycling enthusiasts, beginners, and downhill biking thrill-seekers will find their perfect trail in the scenic landscape of the Brighton-Howell area – and in every season! Here’s our extensive, comprehensive Guide to Biking Trails in Livingston County, Michigan:
In Brighton Recreation Area, three mountain biking trails accommodate beginning and advanced riders. Its combination of irregular, high hills and beautiful lakes make journeys along its oak forests, swamps, and open spaces a blast to ride through.
The Torn Shirt Trail is an advanced, 6-mile single track, one-way trail that climbs over 1,100 feet in total with some rough terrain along the way. Recommended for spring and fall crossings, the Penosha Trail’s 5 miles pass plentiful ponds, lakes, and ridges. Finally, check out the 3.4-mile long Murray Lake Trail, good for almost all levels, gives pictorial views of its namesake lake. Check out a map to begin planning your route!
In the forested, hilly grounds of Kensington Metropark, you’ll find two biking trails: the first is a 8.5-mile paved trail that traverses the picturesque landscapes around Kent Lake, while the second is a 3.4-mile trail that connects to the village of Milford. If you’re looking for mountain biking, there’s a 2-mile trail that connects to Proud Lake State Recreation Area. Check here for the map!
The Island Lake Recreation is a popular biking spot and it’s easy to see why, with its two mountain biking trails with easy terrain. The Island Lake-East/Yellow Loop is a 5.4-mile circle that offers gorgeous scenes beginning with an easy slope near Huron River into a thick, forested area. For a longer journey, take the 8.7-mile long Blue Trail and see views of waterside wildlife as you ride along lakes and rivers.
However, if super simple terrain is more your style, try the 4.5-mile, one-way Paved Bicycle Trail. It can be extended east to connect with the Huron Valley Trail or to Kensington Metropark. Take a look at the park’s map!
The Pickney Recreation Area is home to an extensive, 40+ mile trail system, such as the 5.1-mile Crooked Lake Trail. Its longest, the 17.3-mile Potawatomi Trail passes marshes and wetlands, and features an excellent blend of quick, flowing terrain technical climbs and descents. The Pinckney-Silver Lake Trail is a 2-mile loop along a diverse backdrop of ponds and lakes, with a few scattered hills that offer challenges. Explore a 360° view of the trails and a map!
One of Michigan’s five “linear” state parks, Lakelands Trail State Park is essentially a 20-mile, non-motorized, multi-use trail. It goes through several cities, spanning counties, and will take you through woodlands, wetlands, lakes, small country towns, and quaint family farms. There are 8 miles of paved asphalt trail, followed by an unpaved equestrian path, with the remaining 12 miles covered by finely screened and compacted limestone. It’s a unique experience – for more details, take a look at this map!
When the snow is gone for the season, Mt. Brighton offers Downhill Mountain Bike Racing and it’s as fun as it sounds. The slopes offer an intense and fast track with a few jumps, and the quickest riders might reach times of around 30s. Mt. Brighton the only place that hosts this downhill dual slalom racing series in Michigan. Check out this video for a preview!
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