Gear up for a mountaintop experience in Marquette County in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The Huron Mountain Range dominates the coast of Lake Superior throughout Marquette County. With elevations you can’t find in too many places in the U.P., Marquette County trails mean awe-inspiring views from multiple points.
A favorite snowmobiling path with winding curves and breathtaking overlooks is Trail 14 from Marquette to Big Bay. Stay at the Thunder Bay Inn, the Big Bay Point Lighthouse Bed & Breakfast or the Big Bay Motel to enjoy this stretch of trail featuring twisting mountain paths and clifftop vistas overlooking Lake Superior and Lake Independence. Keep riding and just across the border into Baraga County, you’ll cross the highest point in Michigan, Mount Avron, with an elevation of 1,979 feet.
An easy-to-access overlook with views of the city of Marquette all the way to Presque Isle is Mount Marquette, accessed from Trail 417 just south of Marquette. From there, link up to Trail 8 in Marquette Township to reach the hub of hospitality in the region. Stay at the Holiday Inn or Settle Inn, with great restaurants and brew pubs within an easy car ride and the connector to Trail 8 just outside the door.
Now with the new Ojibwa Express Convenience station on US-41, sleds no longer have to cross the highway to fill up in Marquette Township. A new trail skirts around the west end of Menard’s leading directly to the gas station. For those heading up Trail 14 to Big Bay, the crossover point is now at the Ojibwa Express rather than Brickyard Road.
A central Marquette County location that lets you explore in every direction is the Ishpeming hub. A variety of trailside accommodations make the area a great base camp. Try the Triangle Motel or the Country Village Resort, consisting of two hotels and a group of rental cottages. Plus, the cities of Negaunee and Ishpeming welcome sleds downtown at the many restaurants and brew pubs.
Gwinn is also a popular stop along Trails 8 and 33. The Model Towne Inn is located just off Trail 33. The Up North Lodge is a favorite restaurant along the route, famous for its rib dinners.
Americas Best Value Inn and Lakeside Econo Lodge are great options as well, located on Trail 417 in Harvey, with the Lakenenland sculpture park just east along the trail. The year-round park features sculptures crafted from repurposed junk and is a popular family-friendly stop for sleds. Bring hotdogs and hot cocoa and sit around the campfire.
When not on the trails, enjoy craft beer, delicious food and unique shops in the vibrant downtown districts throughout Marquette County. Choose from a variety of lodging that fits your tastes and budget, from full-service to economy.
Marquette County’s great snowmobile trail system keeps getting better. New this year, Trail 8 cuts over by Craig Lake to skirt around swampy bottomlands and improve the trail experience. A reroute of Trail 5 shortens the trip from Republic to Gwinn by about 15 miles and cuts out a rocky section of trail to make grooming and riding more enjoyable.
With some of the best trails in the Midwest, out-of-this-world scenery, mountain vistas, backwoods routes, friendly locals and businesses, and great grooming along 500 miles of trail, you’ll discover why snowmobilers come back year after year to this favorite winter destination.
Plan your mountaintop experience at TravelMarquetteMichigan.com.