10 Best Mountain Bike Trails In Copper Harbor Michigan
Copper Harbor, Michigan is hailed as one of the best places to mountain bike in the State of Michigan.
Renowned for its mixture of unique terrain and challenging trails, Copper Harbor was designated as an International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) Silver Level “Ride Center” in October of 2012. It also ranks among the top 5 trail systems in the world.
MTB Trails Like No Other in Copper Harbor
If you’re planning a mountain biking sabbatical to Copper Harbor – and haven’t yet decided which trails to ride – then this article is for you. Below you’ll find our suggestions for Copper Harbor’s best MTB trails along with information for each one and what you can expect while riding them.
1. Copper Harbor Loop: Beginner-friendly Introduction
As a beginner, you’ll want to start with the easiest trails to get you acquainted with the trail system. The Copper Harbor Loop will help you do just that. This trail is about 700 meters of singletrack with a max elevation of 194 meters.
Copper Harbor Loop is a family-friendly trail that you can enjoy together with the kids. It’s mostly flat with some easy winding curves, plus awesome views of the area. Dogs are welcome too, whether on or off-leash.
2. De Deet: Gentle Rolling and Generally Flat
De Deet is another beginner-friendly trail in Copper Harbor. This 1-kilometer-long singletrack trail has a max elevation of 342 meters, an average gradient of 3%, and a max gradient of 12%.
Despite these gradient numbers, De Deet is still mostly flat. What climbs you have to do come at you with gentle rolling ups and downs. This trail is easy enough for your kids plus your dog can come along, whether on or off-leash.
Note that this trail does pass through some Copper Harbor ski trails. If you’re unfamiliar with the area, please stick to the bike trails.
3. Magic Carpet: A Challenge for Beginners
If you’re a beginner rider looking to challenge your cardio and your skills, then this trail is for you. Magic Carpet is 2.9 kilometers long with a max elevation of 397 meters. The trail itself is 100% singletrack with an average gradient of 4% but a max gradient of 27%.
Expect some challenging sections as well as some switchbacks. While this trail runs pretty smoothly, there is a reason why it’s rated beginner-intermediate. That’s because of all the climbing you’ll have to do to get over the bigger bumps along the way.
4. The Flow: One Long Descent
Moving on to more intermediate-level trails, we first have one of Copper Harbor’s longest descents with The Flow. This trail stretches 4.6 kilometers long and is 100% singletrack. Its highest elevation is 356 meters, the average gradient is 4% and the max gradient is 14%.
Riders usually use the shuttle service to get up to this trail. You start at the top of Brockway Mountain and end on Copper Harbor’s west side. Expect to find easy sections, steep slopes, as well as lots of berms, twists, and turns.
5. Woopidy Woo: Popular Intermediate Trail with Family-friendly Options
Looking for an intermediate-level trail that you can also ride with your kids? Woopidy Woo is a great choice. This trail is 3.9 kilometers of singletrack with a max elevation of 317 meters. It has an average gradient of 3% and a max gradient of 11%.
Woopidy Woo is one of the most popular trails in the area. You can take your kids and challenge them by riding the trail counterclockwise uphill or just going back down. For an intermediate challenge, go towards this trail’s eastern part and prepare for some flow and banking berms.
6. Flo’Rion: Gravity-oriented Intermediate Challenge
If you’re looking for a more challenging intermediate trail, try this one out. Flo’Rion is a 2.1-kilometer long professionally built trail filled with great gravity-oriented features. Rated intermediate-advanced, this trail has a max elevation of 394 meters, an average gradient of 8%, and a max gradient of 22%.
The trailhead is located west of the summit turnaround of the East Bluff driveway. This trail combines fast flowy berms and rollers with technical sections thanks to the bluff’s rocky terrain. Be careful when taking your eyes off the path as you sneak in glimpses of Lake Superior.
7. On the Edge: Awesome Trail with Equally Stunning Views
Moving on to advanced-level trails, we start with one of the most spectacular that the area has to offer. On the Edge is just around 600 meters long and consists mainly of singletrack. It has a max elevation of 353 meters, an average gradient of 7%, and a max gradient of 24%.
Two factors are making On the Edge a deservingly difficult-rated trail. First is the feeling of literally being on the edge as a section of the trail leads you along the edge of the Brockway Mountain ridge. Then there’s the serpentine plank bridges section that will require your utmost focus.
8. Red Trail to Stairway to Heaven: Combining the Best Advanced Trails
If you’re an advanced rider looking to experience some of the best Copper Harbor trails, why not do so in one go with this trail? The Red Trail to Stairway to Heaven Trail is a 100% singletrack 6-kilometer long route. It has a max elevation of 346 meters, an average gradient of 4%, and a max gradient of 19%.
This point-to-point trail starts you off at Keweenaw Mountain Lodge and finishes in downtown Copper Harbor. Because this trail encompasses the best of the area’s advanced trails, you get a bit of everything from technically challenging sections to fast descents.
9. Overflow: Gravity-defying and Technical
If you’re an expert-level rider looking for some high-flying thrills, definitely check out Overflow. This trail is 1.6 kilometers long with a max elevation of 351 meters, an average gradient of 10%, and a max gradient of 33%. Overflow contains features like massive and wall-like berms, gap jumps, rock gardens, and a lot more.
Do note that this is a double black diamond trail so you may not want to ride it unless you have absolute confidence in your skills.
10. Downtown: Copper Harbor’s Gnarliest One-way Downhill
For the expert rider looking for the ultimate one-way downhill trail in Copper Harbor, you won’t find anything gnarlier than Downtown. This trail is 1.4 kilometers long with a max elevation of 313 meters, an average gradient of 7%, and a max gradient of 15%. This trail’s name comes from the fact that it’s the original gravity trail that leads you from Keweenaw Mountain Lodge to downtown Copper Harbor.
You start on fairly mild rollers then the course just gets more and more technical from there. The trail winds you through the forest, complete with root and rock obstacles, then make your way to “Wall Street” with its steep rock garden features. There are then a few more tight techy turns and sweeping rollers before you finish the ride.