The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced that a draft of the new Michigan Comprehensive Trails Plan for motorized, non-motorized and water trails is available online for public review and comment.
The draft plan can be viewed on the DNR’s Michigan Snowmobile and Trails Advisory Council webpage and also is available on the DNR’s State Parks and Trails and Pathways webpages. Comments can be submitted via an online survey that is posted along with the draft. The DNR will accept comments and feedback on the draft plan through Friday, Jan. 25.
The trails plan addresses the status of Michigan’s motorized, non-motorized and water trails, and will serve as a guidebook in future decision-making on DNR trail-related programs. Michigan’s trails are enjoyed by equestrians, off-road vehicle enthusiasts, snowmobilers, hikers, bikers and cross-country skiers all across the state.
“In offering this draft plan for broad public review, the DNR seeks to get the best possible feedback from the people who most use our extensive trail system and those who would like to enjoy it more,” said DNR Parks and Recreation Division Chief Ron Olson. “Michigan is home to a vast and varied trail system. Our goal is to provide a consistent, quality resource that best meets the needs of the steadily increasing number of trail users.”
Michigan’s extensive trail network – and the outdoor recreation, health and economic benefits it brings to nearby communities – is contributing to Michigan being recognized nationally not only as the Great Lakes State, but also as the Trail State. Michigan’s more than 12,000 miles of trails include over 6,000 miles of snowmobile trails and more than 3,600 miles of off-road vehicle trails. The state’s 2,600-mile rail-trail system is the largest in the nation and continues to grow. Nearly 600 miles of trails are designated equestrian trails, including the 300-mile Shore-to-Shore riding trail. Currently, the Michigan Heritage Water Trails is an initiative connecting communities using navigable waterways with the first designated trail – the River Country Heritage Water Trail – in St. Joseph County.