Where should I ride?

When traveling to new areas, that’s often one of the most challenging questions to answer. A local bike shop can be an excellent resource for recommendations, but what if you have limited time to ride and you don’t want to waste much of it figuring out which trail system is for you? Hopefully, this quick guide can help you choose a SWMMBA managed trail system in West Michigan.

Al Sabo (details…)
A local “quick ride after work” favorite. Al Sabo features around 5 miles of bike legal singletrack and has approximately 100 feet of elevation change per loop. The trails here were designed before “bike optimized” was even a concept, so expect some narrow trail tread, tight corners, sand, and roots. This a popular spot with hikers, runners, and dog walkers, and the trail crosses a paved multi-use path in many locations, so be extra aware while riding.

Directions to parking | No fees to park or ride.

Fort Custer (details…)
When having a conversation about classic, legacy singletrack in Michigan, Fort Custer is often near the top of the list. The Fort has 20+ miles of trails to choose from, and if you love natural trail tread, punchy climbs, and old school midwest tech, this is the place for you. Hardpack, rocks, roots, sand, berms, tight trees; Fort Custer has it all. This trail is a West Michigan icon, and locals have been shredding here for more than 25 years.

Directions to parking | Michigan State Park Pass required (More info…)

Maple Hill Trail (details…)
A bike optimized gem close to downtown Kalamazoo. Maple Hill is a professionally machine built, bike-only flow trail. At just over 4 miles in length, it features nearly 400 feet of elevation gain (and loss!) per lap. The trail changes direction daily, and each direction is laced with long descents, tabletops, large berms, and rock features. Bypasses are available for the rock features, and the tables roll at slower speeds or will fully send riders that treat gravity as a suggestion. Maple Hill is a great trail to learn new skills and progress as a rider.

Directions to parking | Kalamazoo County Parks pass required | $5 daily, $20 annual (More info…)

Warnaar Trail (details…)
“An XC roller coaster,” is what you may say to yourself on your first ride of the Warnaar Trail. At just under 7 miles, this machine built trail twists, turns, climbs, and drops through the beautiful Meyer Broadway County Park. It has around 375 feet of elevation change per lap. This hardpacked trail rolls fast, and bermed turns beg riders to keep the speed up. Even though this trail is a machine built ripper, we took great care to keep the tread narrow and the corridor intimate. A few tech surprises alongside the route keeps things interesting.

Directions to parking | St. Joseph County Park pass required | $4 daily, $20 annual (More info…)

Looking for trails a little farther north? Check out our friends at WMMBA

More southwest? Check out NIMBA Trails.

Heading to Central Michigan? MMMBA has you covered.

Even further east?! POTOMBA has lots of trails, but you should ride DTE 😉

Non SWMMBA Managed Local Trails