Depending on if you are tackling the 100-mile Coast Loop in Ludington or the 200-mile Coast to Coast, here are some suggestions if you have time to explore.
Standish and US 23
If you’ve arrived at the start of the 200-mile race early, explore the area attractions along US 23 that hugs the Lake Huron coast. If you’re a morning person, you’ll love the sunrise shore. Here’s a list of things to do in Au Gres, near the start of the 210-miler.
Thinking about hanging in Ludington before or after the race? This is a cool coastal town right on Lake Michigan. I head right for the Ludington State Park for awesome hiking, paddling and the Big Sable Point lighthouse. But you may just want to chill. For that, Ludington has great breweries and restaurants and shops in town. Stop by Q Smokehouse, Spindrift Cycle Sports, and Trailhead Bike Shop, three of our sponsors. If you have any energy left, check out the local singletrack trails just a few minutes to the north offering fun but not strenuous shakeouts after the race. Learn more here:
Greater Grand Rapids area
Do you have more time to explore the area before or after the race? Head for Grand Rapids, one of the most attractive mid-size areas in the U.S. Click here for a full list of attractions. Here are two of the world-class attractions:
Frederick Meijer Gardens – the second most visited attraction in Michigan. A great blend of art and nature. The Japanese Gardens are spectacular.
Beer City USA. GR has some of the best restaurants and breweries in the area and won the Beer City USA award multiple times. Founders Brewing Co. is ranked the #2 brewery in the U.S. (#1 Bells is a short drive to the south) while HopCat has been ranked the #1 brewpub in America. Check out the 70-brewery Ale Trail (including many beyond GR) and 15 brewery tours in the area.
Bike Shops. Need something before the race? Stop in at Alger Bikes in Grand Rapids, Ray’s Bike Shops closer to the 200-mile start or Spindrift Cycle Sports and Trailhead Bike Shop in Ludington.
Bike Trails. West Michigan is known for flowy, sustainable, shaded singletrack trails demanding various levels of skills (no highly technical riding). Check out our 20+ trails on our Trailforks region page including the world class Dragon Trail and other local favorites such as Merrell, Mosquito Creek and Cannonsburg area trails (check Owasippe’s website for open dates since it’s a boy scouts camp).