Trails and Recreation
One does not travel across the country for the sole purpose of racing. At the very least, racing should just be an excuse to travel across the country and ride in new areas. The location of the Lumberjack allows for just that, as there are numerous riding options in the Manistee area.
The Lumberjack race course intersects the North Country Trail (NCT), a 4,600 mile route that travels from New York to North Dakota on a mix of roads and trails. The NCT segments near the Lumberjack are excellent riding trails that extend for 30 miles in either direction with the premier segment being a 14 mile segment from Dilling Road to the Marilla trailhead. Plite describes this segment of trail as having “steep, long climbs and some great bench cut hillsides to navigate.”
For a non-bike related activity in the area, Plite recommends visiting Lake Michigan and taking a dip in the only Great Lake entirely within the US border. Located just 20 miles west of Manistee, going for a swim after the race would be a quick side trip.
After the Lumberjack, the NUE Series takes a one month break before continuing its trek west with the Breckenridge 100 in Colorado and the High Cascade 100 in Oregon.
Eszter Horanyi lives and mountain bikes in Crested Butte, CO. She has dabbled in road racing, cyclocross racing, and cross country mountain bike racing, but has gravitated towards ultra endurance and multi day self supported racing in the more recent past. She firmly believes that nothing tops a good ride with good friends on good trails, thus she spends her life in search of all of the above. You can follow her adventures on her blog. All articles by Eszter.