In the northern lower peninsula, the Shore-to-Shore Trail (aka Michigan Riding and Hiking Trail) stretches 210 miles from Empire and Elberta on Lake Michigan to Oscoda on Lake Huron. Campgrounds have been established every 25 miles, with every other one placed near a lake or river. It crosses several beautiful rivers and traverses pristine state and national forest land, including the Huron-Manistee National Forest. It is open to hiking and horseback riding, but not mountain biking.
Around Traverse City, the trail cuts through Lake Dubonnet, Muncie Lakes, the Sand Lakes Quiet Area and then heads north of Kalkaska before continuing eastward.
Theres also a southern branch of the trail that heads south from the Sand Lakes Quiet Area to Cadillac. A northern branch exits the main trail near Graying and heads north through the Pigeon River Country State Forest to a point east of Indian River. Both branches have campgrounds along the trails, but the Elk Hill area of the northern branch is becoming so popular that often its hard to find a camping spot on weekends during the busy summer season.
The Michigan Trail Riders Association (MTRA) and its 3,500 members help maintain the trail through organized work bees. They sponsor six rides each season that go from coast to coast. The group also has the latest and most detailed maps of the trail.