The dream of one continuous trail connecting Grand Rapids to Muskegon is inching closer to reality. In the summer of 2012, the first 6 miles of the new Fred Meijer Pioneer Trail were completed from Marne to Walker Avenue in Grand Rapids. In 2015, the trail was extended another 2 miles along Three Mile Road from Walker Avenue to Alpine Avenue. The Fred Meijer Pioneer Trail begins where the Musketawa Trail ends, at the Marne trailhead, and will eventually continue on to Comstock Park where it will converge with the Fred Meijer White Pine Trail and Grand River Edges Trail. The trail is paved with asphalt, passing through a scenic landscape of farmland, woodlands and urban neighborhoods, including a tunnel under Fruit Ridge Avenue. Kent County Parks is in the process of acquiring right-of-ways to complete the remaining eastern section of trail. We will keep you posted on their progress.
The 26-mile Musketawa Trail is a slice of pure Americana. Originally the Central Michigan Railroad, the rail bed was acquired in 1992 and turned into a rail trail through the efforts of the Friends of the Musketawa Trail. It's a peaceful, comfortable ride or run past quintessential farms with plenty of birds, butterflies and natural beauty to keep you entertained along the way. The entire length of the trail is paved with asphalt.
Set against the backdrop of rural America, your journey takes you through small country towns and wide expanses of farm fields, marshes and shady woodlands. The trail features 13 wooden trestles, the longest a 200-foot trestle over Crockery Creek in Ravennof which are roofed). The Friends havealso added railroad memorabilia along the way with railroad crossing signs, and a restored 100-year-old water tower and a railroad caboose at the trail midpoint in the Ravenna Staging Area .
When you reach the end of the trail in Muskegon, look for the directional signs that guide you north along a connecting route on Latimer Drive to the Laketon Trail and Muskegon Lakeshore Trail.
The entire trail, from the Marne trailhead to Muskegon, is open to snowmobiling and skiing during the winter season.