MI-TRALE Building a Major Multi-Use Trail System

The Western Upper Peninsula of Michigan has always been known as a premier destination for recreation. Now this area is quickly becoming the place to ride your ORV, thanks to the work of Michigan Trails and Recreation Alliance of Land and the Environment, commonly known as MI-TRALE.

MI-TRALE is responsible for maintaining a total of (7) DNR Multi-use Designated Trails for a total of 310 miles in the Western UP. Of these seven, five are located in or pass-through Ontonagon County. Maps of the recreational trail systems are available at local service locations and on-line at www.mi-trale.org. There is also a free map app called “Michigan UP Trails” that you can download.

A brief description of the Trails are as listed below:

Pioneer (P): 24 miles long, running mostly through the woods. Multitype of surfaces and quite hilly. Connects Bergland to Rockland & Greenland.

Sidnaw-Bergland (SB): 49 miles long, follows M28 providing a diverse vista from large farm fields to water falls at the Agate Bridge over the Ontonagon River. Connects Sidnaw to Bergland.

Bill Nicholls (BN): 40 miles long, follows M26 from Greenland to Houghton. You should not miss the vista from the triple trestles just east of M26. The trail passes though multiple historic mining sites. Beautiful ride in the spring for flowers and the fall for colors.

Ontonagon-Rockland (OR): 13 miles long. The trail runs through the woods connecting Ontonagon to Rockland. Watch for wildlife.

Ottawa East Connector (OC): 79 miles long. This trail offers a variety of scenic views and wildlife opportunities. It uses a variety of road types for the journey. A great fall color trip and spring flowers. Connects to the (BN) just east of Greenland and then runs south to State Line (SL) Trail.

Courtney Equestrian Trails: 14 miles long. Located at the Courtney Lake Campground and on Ottawa National Forest property. This has been a successful partnership project between MI-TRALE and the Ottawa National Forest. The equestrian users are able to camp and ride in the same location.

MI-TRALE is responsible for the maintenance of each trail. This includes brushing, signage, and grading. The brushing and signage are completed by MI-TRALE volunteers. Most of the major grading projects are completed by contractors managed by MI-TRALE. We continue to build and maintain a safe trail system for the user.