Spirit of the Woods Chapter

Autumn Woods
Autumn Woods

Hi, this is the Spirit of the Woods Chapter of the North Country Trail Association. We maintain about 80 miles of the North Country Trail in the Manistee, Lake and Mason counties of the northern lower peninsula of Michigan. Much of the trail in our section goes through the Manistee National Forest. We have activities such as hikes or other silent sports as well as work on the trail to build and maintain it. See our Outings and Trail Work pages. Please join us on our monthly outings.

Attention! The promoter of the mountain bike event has decided to withdraw his permit application. He responded to numerous negative comments about the unsuitability of the North Country Trail for an event of this size. Many of the negative comments came from local mountain bikers along with the Spirit of the Woods chapter. Many thanks to those who responded to the Forest Service with opinions about the event.

The national office of the North Country Trail Association received permit notification from the Manistee National Forest for a mountain bike event next year. If the Forest Service grants a permit for this event it would be a mountain bike “challenge” (a timed event) and would be held on the North Country trail from Mesik, MI to Bowman Lake in the southern part of the Spirit of the Woods chapter. It would have up to 350 riders and would take place one day during September or October of 2015. If the permit is granted it could be renewed each year for five years.

The North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT)has been rerouted between High Bridge and Sawdust Hole, due to bank erosion. When heading north from High Bridge visitors will be rerouted to travel on Forest Road 8580 for approximately 1 ½ miles before returning to the trail. The reroute is signed at both ends.