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blueBlack Highland Recreation A-B-C-D Loops

  4.4 ( 46 ) Favorite

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14.7 mile 23.6 kilometer point to point
100% Singletrack


Ascent: 1,584' 483 m
Descent: -1,570' -479 m
High: 1,129' 344 m
Low: 975' 297 m


Avg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 16% (9°)


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A jewel of a trail with tight twisty singletrack, rock gardens, and roots in a dense hardwood forest

Randy Kessler

E-Bikes Not Allowed

Features -none-

Popular with hunters during deer season. Check Michigan DNR site for exact dates and wear orange when appropriate. A Michigan "Recreation Passport" is required to park at the trailhead.


Bob Yankus devoted 2 years to lay out a trail that was non-raceable, and no straight sections in excess of 50 feet! This trail, completed in 1995, has stood the test of time as it incorporated many of today's IMBA's "Trail Solutions" principles such as filters, stacked loops, erosion control, and has a very sweet and technical flow. This is not a trail for beginners, but for those intermediate riders looking to take it up a notch. Experienced riders that love tight singletrack through a dense forest will love this trail.

Need to Know

A "Recreation Passport" is required to park at the trailhead. There are currently not a lot of emergency exit points and even completing the A&B sections can be overwhelming for the less experienced. You are deep in the woods and should travel with appropriate emergency equipment for repairs, bug repellent, etc.. It may be a bit of hike out of the woods if you or your bike break down.


From the trailhead on Livingston Road, ride the A Loop (3.8 miles) & B Loop (9.7 miles) as the basic continuous trail. You can add the C Loop (2.7 miles, offshoot of B Loop) and / or D Loop (3.8 miles, offshoot of A Loop) for a total of 16.2 miles.

Your time will be spent navigating rocks and roots on this narrow singletrack-lovers heaven. There is plenty of off-camber trail to keep you on your toes, too. Beginners should ride this trail with other experienced riders; it is a challenging ride. The basic A/B Loop defines the character of this trail, while C Loop adds more rock passages. D Loop is the most technical with lots of tight, off-camber up and downturns and some extended climbing. Advanced riders ONLY should attempt this loop. If you plan on riding all loops, allow at least 2+ hours.

History & Background

Haven Hill, the Estate of Edsel Ford from 1923-1943, is now part of Highland State Recreation. and is adjacent to Mountain Bike Trail.


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Apr 30, 2019
Christian Clark
damn 16mi
Sep 5, 2018
Ryan Justus
Aug 20, 2018
Davey Washboard
A and d loop 8mi
Aug 14, 2018
Adam Makarewicz
Aug 14, 2018
Jim Shoemaker
Did not ride entire trail. Returning from Canada and made a pit stop here with limited time. This trail will work you with numerous climbs. I go he… 12.2mi
Aug 8, 2018
Christian Clark
Jul 22, 2018
Todd Craine
Ability to focus, mental toughness, will be tested. As will your conditioning. 14.7mi
Jun 24, 2018
Erik Schleede

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Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 46 votes


  4.4 from 46 votes
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in Michigan


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16,321 Since Jan 27, 2015
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Highland Rec is a really good workout because you never really get a chance to recover fully. Always turning, descending or climbing. For some really technical riding in Mich, go to Copper Harbor in the Upper Peninsula. The upcoming Copper Harbor Trails Fest is Sept. 1-3,…. The Marquette trail system is excellent as well and nearby Aug 9, 2017
These twisty trails are rather advanced. They seem more difficult than they really due to the high physical demands. There a lots of semi-sandy sections which slow you down subtly and lots of uphill sections with roots, rocks, and turns that make the climbs that much more difficult. I've seen more than a couple riders wipeout from loss of focus due to exhaustion. Take extra care to stay focused. Aug 13, 2017
One of my favorite trails in Michigan, lots of roots lots of ups and downs a few rocks, you're always turning, and it feels like i'm in wilderness. In early june when the cottonwood fluff flies, sometimes sections of the forest look like it's been snowing. There are a few little drops or log rolls, if you look closely there are some bigger rocks that can be used as jumps. The one thing that takes me away from this trail is that there are big jumps at DTE but I love that this is old school natural hand cut stuff not a dirt luge tube. Mar 19, 2019

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