With fall arriving and the temperature dropping every day, it becomes tempting to staying inside and cuddle up on the couch rather than venture out into the chilly autumn winds. But with the beautiful scenery in Shelby Township and Utica surrounds us with, why not take advantage?
Combined, the two neighboring cities have miles of mountain bike trails for residents to enjoy while the autumn leaves change to breathtaking streaks of gold, orange, red and yellow. The average peak color for the area is from late September to mid-October.
So where should Utica and Shelby Township residents go to enjoy the brisk autumn air and the amazing trail scenery?
River Bends Park
- Location: 5700 22 Mile Rd Shelby Township, MI 48317
- Length: 6.9 miles
- About: River Bends Park contains roughly 6.9 miles of trail dirt two-track, and is broken down by easy and chalenging trails. There is also an asphalt path throughout the park which will eventually connect to downtown Utica.
To download a map, click here.
- Location: Dequindre Road to Richmond
- Length: 23 Miles
- About: Named for the rich assortment of fruit trees in southeast Michigan, this trail cuts a 23.5-mile arch across the northern portion of Macomb County from Dequindre Road to Richmond. In Shelby Township, you can pick up the trail on Dequindre at the Clinton River Trail, which also links up to Paint Creek Trail and downtown Rochester. The trail travels through wooded areas, past farmland, near a few commercial areas, and close to some residential areas. It passes through the outskirts of Romeo and Armada, and its western end is located near downtown Richmond.
For an online map visit orchardtrail.org.
Macomb County Loop
As part of an $8.5-million project to connect several existing hike-bike trails into a giant, continuous, 70-mile loop, bike paths from Utica's Heritage Park were paved in 2011 to connect it to Shelby Township's Macomb Orchard Trail. The last leg of the Hike and Bike Trail in Utica’s city limits will connect Auburn Road to the existing path in River Bends Park, and into Stony Creek. Construction has not finished on this portion of the trail.
- Location: Rochester, MI
- Length: Fourteen Miles
- About: Mountain bikers can enjoy nearly fourteen miles of hilly, heavily wooded dirt trails that extend throughout the southwest side of the park. The gravel, rocks and ruts are heaven to mountain bikers. The tight curves and steep hills take you through deep woods and tall pine trees, and along clear streams and hidden ponds. Wildlife, including deer and wild turkeys can be seen along the trails. Helmets required on mountain bike trails.