Keweenaw Trails

Tech Announces Snow Biking Opportunity

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Michigan Tech has announced the opening of certain trails this winter for snow biking, a new sport that involves bikes built specifically for snow.

Those interested can ride only bikes built for snow biking (regular mountain bikes are not allowed) and must stay on specified trails. A snow bike has tires wider than 3.5 inches and tire pressures of less than 10 psi. Read on to find out the other rules and the trails that snow bikes can use.

As an experiment, Tech is allowing snow biking on 14 kilometers of trails that already are open for walkers and dogs (a complete list of trails is at the end of this post). Snow bike riding next winter depends on how things go this year. MTU has provided a list of rules to keep everyone safe:

  • Purpose built snow bikes only! Tires must be wider than 3.5″ and tire pressure must be less than 10 psi, no exceptions! Don’t ride any old mountain bike out there.
  • Stay out of the classic ski tracks.
  • Bikes yield to all other users. Skiers don’t have brakes, so bikes are responsible for staying out of their way. And watch skiers’ poles. They can be fragile and expensive and unpredictable – the skiers too.
  • Be a good trail citizen. If the conditions cause you to leave ruts that will impede skiing, leave the trail – don’t just keep riding because the rules say you can. Spread the word about snow biking, make it fun, keep it safe.
  • Be an ambassador for the sport – stay polite, educate other bikers, discourage bad behavior, follow the rules, and we’ll all have a good time this winter.
  • Buy a pass. All trail users must purchase a day or season pass.

Trails open to snow bikes are listed below. These are the only trails open to bikes. Snowshoe trails not listed below are off limits. The complete list:

  • Isle Royale (20′ wide tilled)
  • Superior (20′ wide tilled)
  • Hairy Toad Loop west of Isle Royale Loop (ungroomed single track)
  • Husky Trail (connects Isle Royale to Tolkien Trails, 8′ wide packed and tracked)
  • Tolkien Trails (across Pilgrim Road, 8′ wide packed and tracked)
  • Dragon Trail (across Pilgrim Road, ungroomed single track)
  • Lookout Loop (Nara Animal Shelter trail, 8′ wide packed)
  • River Trail (Nara Animal Shelter trail, 8′ wide packed)


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