Highland Recreation A-B-C-D Loops

 23 votes

14.7 Miles 23.6 Kilometers



1,584' 483 m


-1,570' -479 m


1,129' 344 m


975' 297 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (9°)

All Clear

43 days agoUpdate

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

Randy Kessler


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.
Dogs: Leashed

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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4.3 from 23 votes

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Jun 24, 2017
Erik Schleede
Jun 2, 2017
Erin Rose Briggs
Nov 5, 2016
William Desmond
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Oct 15, 2016
Angie Anderson
Oct 14, 2016
Scott Danish
Rode with Locals Chris and Kent 15.1mi
Sep 5, 2016
Richard Hirschmann
Jan 29, 2016
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Aug 22, 2015
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  4.4 from 21 votes


  4.4 from 21 votes
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All Clear 43 days ago
Mostly Dry
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I was looking for the most difficult / most technical trails that Michigan had to offer, and judging by the descriptions and photos of the Highland Rec Area, I thought it was going to be a techy blast. I was incorrect. Rocks and roots on <1% of total trail. Mostly smooth twisty turny singletrack with no extended climbing. Avg speed is very slow with all the turns. Longest straight is ~30yds. Oct 18, 2016

To be clear, it is a fun and well designed network, just not the techy lover's dreamland I was hoping for. It could be ridden easily and enjoyably on a rigid single speed 29er. Oct 20, 2016

Fun, very twisty single track. Loop A and B offer wide enough trails, then C and D get tighter. Some big log overs, couple of drops. All very fun. Though I agree with other comments that this was not really technical. I enjoyed the trail and will keep this on my list for when I get back to the area. May 14, 2017

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