There were two large flooded areas, with one I was able to ride on the side and get through cleanly, on the other I had to walk on large sticks/saplings that people have put there for that purpose. Van Buren State Park is comprised of 400 acres of land located along the Lake Michigan shoreline in northern Van Buren County. Just north of Van Buren, upstream on Lee Creek, is Devil’s Den State Park. Check or FAQs for more common login questions. This section is much nicer and the ride over the sand dune (on a well packed trail) and the descent into the park is awesome. It's in a good location and has a lot of potential but it's not ready for bikers at this time. In addition, because of frequent stops and the necessity of walking the bike, you cannot depend on speed to create a resistance against the advance of mosquitoes. Van Buren State park has 3 miles of singletrack mountain bike trails. Located three miles south of South Haven, the campground is only minutes away from local shops and restaurants. Become a member and wear your FREE T-Shirt with pride. I parked my car there and went for a run. The part we disliked was the traffic, especially on Red Arrow Hwy., avoid that road. Enjoy a picnic on the beach, head out on woodland trails, or come to camp within a short distance from South Haven. The popular Van Buren State Park has gained 17-acres this week thanks to approval by Van Buren County officials of a 25-year lease with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to expand the park’s footprint to include the Northpoint Conservation Area located in South Haven Township. The trail is 0.1 mile to the west on Lovejoy Avenue on the south side of the street. I rode the entire length of the trail last weekend. We were only able to go a little over two miles, before we had to turn back. Rode it both ways today (6/8/13). It's an endurance ride. Oh ya, be sure to bring your bug spray. I only met one couple riding bikes during my entire 2 hour run (on a thursday). It takes you to the main road across from the beach access parking lot. So, if you want a nice leisurely ride, this is not your trail. On the morning of July, 20, 2011, my wife and I attempted to ride this trail starting at the Hartford end. One trail is nice paved family trail that connects South Haven to the Van Buren State park. I had one beautiful pause on the ride, coming across a blackberry bush with hundreds of honey bees (rare enough these days) flitting about the full bloom; their sound alone filling the empty woods. Enjoy your day! The state park centers on 53-acre (21 ha) Van Buren Lake. I would like to see a little bit more attention paid to it. Hardpack, sand, mud, grass, it's all represented here. most are small and ridable but multiple portaging over huge trees. The trail that branches off towards Hartford is pretty much unimproved and is best if you want to … Not extremely hilly, paved nicely from South Haven all the way to the campground, plus you can park and start with views of Lake Michigan! Van Buren Trail State Park, also known as Trail State Park, is an unimproved rail trail running along a former railroad right-of-way between Hartford, Michigan to South Haven, Michigan in Van Buren County. The focal points of the park are its high dune formations and one mile of sandy beach. There was no debris on my trip, but again, after a heavy storm that's likely to change until it's cleared. South of the expressway the trail is unimproved and snowmobiling is allowed to the Hartford, MI trailhead. Trailhead Coordinates 10336 Blue Star Hwy - off Lovejoy South Haven, MI 49090 42.385058, -86.278641 Hartford, MI 49057 42.211410, … Van Buren Trail State Park - Al-Van's Firecracker Furry Virtual 5k Date: June 27, 2020 - July 12, 2020 Time: All Day Event Location: Kids Corner Park, 82 Monroe Street, South Haven MI 49090 This one was a mistake. This trail is 2 in one actually. Still, it's worth keeping an eye on for when it's better developed. South Haven maintains the marked route that connects to a downtown trailhead, city businesses, beaches and Kal-Haven Trail State Park.. We tried the trail from Hartford, but gave up in a couple miles. You'll be lost when you get to the state park. I am up for trying anything once-- especially a bike trail that heads to Lake Michigan. The focal points of the park are its high dune formations and one mile of sandy beach. Wet in the spring up to 3-4 inches in some areas (these are few.) This trail is OK with a gravel or mountain bike. A few blueberry farmers were out, surprisingly, I guess they were pruning. The Official Home page for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, DNR. Head for Van Buren Trail State Park and take a walk (or ride) on the wild side. That parking lot felt a bit isolated, but I had no issues. The trail from downtown South Haven out to Van Buren State Park is a nice paved trail, and a good way to escape the summer crowds of the town and can be done on any bike. I just talked to it and kept riding at the same speed and it lost interest. The other is far more of an adventure trail for the experienced trail cyclist. My wife and I rode this trail in late September 2012. Wildlife abounds on this rural 14 miles between Hartford and South Haven. Show more. If you are thinking of cycling this trail, you will need either a mountain bike or an all terrain bike, patience to deal with the unexpected, and stamina. You can take that trail north into downtown South Haven, or follow the pavement southwest for 2.5 miles to the state park. It is not well maintained and is 90% overgrown with grass and weeds. The nortnern part near South Haven is paved, with a trail spur that goes the Van Buren State Park. It was clear. However, you have to be prepared for some tough riding in certain places. Flat course. The trail runs through open farmland, blueberry fields, dense brush, and wooded areas. ", TrailLink is a free service provided by Rails-to-Trails conservancy, We're a non-profit all about helping you enjoy the outdoors, 57th Ave./Prospect St. (Hartford) and Lovejoy Ave. (South Haven). It was a workout, which was what I wanted, as I try to get into shape for the riding season. The nortnern part near South Haven is paved, with a trail spur that goes the Van Buren State Park. The Van Buren Trail Spur splits off from the Van Buren Trail State Park near 16th Avenue. Numerous festivals are held throughout the year, including the National Blueberry Festival and South Haven Jazz Fest. Situated on the shores of Lake Michigan, Van Buren State Park has one mile of sandy beach and high dune formations. In the dry heat of the summer, the trail is dry. I think my ride yesterday was more fun, though much more challenging, than my ride of the Kal-Haven trail a few years ago. This is about a 5 mile section, and veers off from the main trail at 16th avenue. Situated on the shores of Lake Michigan, Van Buren State Park campground has 220 campsites (66 with electric hookups) for tents, trailers and RVs. I wouldn't try to ride this after a heavy rain, some parts are marshy, a few parts are sandy, just watch where you put the wheel. If the Van Buren Trail were maintained a bit better, we believe it would have great potential. There was a lot of signage telling people to stay on the trail. We would give that trail a four or five star. The Van Buren State Park Trail will take you north for many miles, connecting through a few other, smaller parks and eventually ending in South Haven. A convenience store in town has the only refreshments and restroom facilities on this rural trail. The newly paved stretch was acquired from Consumers Energy in the mid-1990s. It's overgrown, dangerously bumpy, and parts of it are flooded. Won't be riding this again. Located 3 miles south of South Haven, the campground is only minutes away from local shops and restaurants. I consider a fatty, a bike with 4 inch wide tires at low air pressure, the perfect bike for all of the trail. The surface of the trail creates a challenging ride that is more … Slightly uphill from Hartford to South Haven, enough to wear you down.There were no fallen trees or branches, so some minimal care is being given to the trail. Some parts soft sand and we had to walk bikes. The trash is ridiculous. It is much like the Kal-Haven trail. If you're on foot, this is a nice day out. trail spur start & parking ages ed ea. Sometimes it seems like you are riding through peoples backyards. Erosion often shrinks property along Lake Michigan, but Van Buren State Park is expanding, thanks to a partnership with the Michigan DNR.. A few miles south of South Haven, you'll find the Van Buren State Park along a scenic mile of Lake Michigan shoreline. I've been hiking the trail in sections and it's a beautiful walk through expansive blueberry fields through the heart of Van Buren County. The Kal-Haven Trail starts in South Haven northeast of downtown. The scent of pine lingers as you emerge from the woodlands and enter fields of blueberry bushes and vineyards.At mile 8 the small town of Covert is located one block south of the trail. The trail is mostly a combination of … Van Buren Trail State Park Map (PDF) Van Buren Trail State Park is a recreational trail that stretches from South Haven to Hartford. It is 14 miles (23 km) long and mostly used by horse trail riders in the summer and snowmobilers in the winter. The trail can be used for mountain biking, hiking, jogging, horseback riding, and snowmobiling. Head for Van Buren Trail State Park and take a walk (or ride) on the wild side. The 400-acre Van Buren State Park offers a beach on the Lake Michigan shoreline, woodland trails, and a campground. It is 14 miles (23 km) long and mostly used by horse trail riders in the summer and snowmobilers in the winter. Unfortunately, we left the trail and rode the back roads back to Hartford. Van Buren Trail State Park is a recreational trail that stretches from South Haven to Hartford. Maybe try in August. But if you're a newbie on the bike or a runner, then this trail is a great place to start. I rode from 12th avenue in South Haven to the Hartford trailhead, which took about 2.5 hours. Join TrailLink (a non-profit) to view more than 30,000 miles of trail maps and more! Cruising northwest to South Haven you pass beneath tall pines, maples and various hardwood trees. First couple of miles through South Haven and in Hartford are fine, but is mostly grassy and wet. I will probably do the southern part of this trail, but I prefer exploring the other trails around this area before I return and do this again. The 5 mile section between South Haven and the Van Buren State Park is nicely paved. It feels like walking through someone’s back yard. I am not young (57) or in particularly good shape (200+ pounds), but I was able to ride virtually all of the trail. Van Buren State Park has some beach and steep dunes, as it is positioned right on Lake Michigan. No chance with a road bike. Found alternate routes on the country roads for the way home. This part of Michigan is noted for its wine and fruit. Some parts swampy. mile 1-2 are fairly clear, after mile 2.5, trees are down. It took me about three hours to do the entire trail from Hartford to South Haven. 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