This mixed surface, multi-use path is a 47 mile, 100% car free route connecting the south side of Marquette to the little town of Republic. The route pays homage to the Iron Ore industry that has been in existence well over a century. A cool detail to look for along the way is the mile markers and interpretive signage frames constructed out of the original rail line.
There are 9 trail-heads across the entire stretch. Between Marquette and Ishpeming, you’re never more than 7 miles from a designated trail head and/or amenities. The trail surface varies from asphalt to crushed limestone. West of Ishpeming, the trail surface is listed as “no upgraded surface.” 40c tires or bigger and moderate bike handling skills are recommended for this 17 mile portion.
Trail maps and mile markers are frequent. Heading west (toward Ishpeming/Republic) has more elevation gain than riding toward Marquette.
This trail is an excellent way to explore Marquette, especially highlights of the lake Superior shoreline. The path overlaps with the heritage trail at a few points and reaches all the way out to the famous Presque Isle Park and Black Rocks cliff jumping/swimming area. Not a complete loop, but pretty manageable to cover in one day. Restrooms, water, and even a bike repair stand or two are available throughout. Click the link to get a great description of all the highlights along the way.