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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking for a family friendly area to take kids riding.

How about some reccomendations on northern Michigan and central u.p destinations from your own experiences.

Want to be able to take kids on trails as well as find a nice area for them to mess around on their sleds. Kids are 6,8 &14.

I noticed Jack Pine Lodge seems to have nice area and cabins. The Lodge looks fun , but don't know if more adult crowd or family friendly.Is this a little less busy than Newberry or Paradise ?

All opinions welcome !!
 

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Don't take this wrong, but from my experience, it would be nuts. There is no way I'd take my 8yr old on those trails. I know how I ride, and many people ride much harder than me and my friends , and I wouldn't feel safe with my own kid with me. Maybe in the beginning of the week or middle it would be ok but never onn the weekend. The part that scares me is the corners. We usually stay in Curtis, which has 2 lakes to ride. That might be good for the kids. The lakes generally aren't too dangerous. Although I broke my shoulder on the Big Manistique in 2001.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'll take my 14 yr. old on the trails , but i just want an area to play with the little ones off trail.
 

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Curtis would be a great choice then. It is very nice on the lakes for the kids. Especially the south lake. You can get a cabin right on the lake and they would love it. If you stay on the Big Manistique, stay at Pine Bluff lodge(?) very, very nice and on the lake. Kids will love it. Pool, games, etc. Nice bar too.
 

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I personally have not rode the central U.P. but I think you could find some good riding in the western U.P. Go mid week take the kids to bond falls ( you can drive right to it on a sled) Ride up to lake in the clouds one day. You can ride to a ski area or even stay at a lodge ride for part of the day and ski the rest or just hang out. trails are alot of railroad grades fairly wide and smooth. stay around watersmeet or bergland area depending where you are going as the kids may not want be an a sled for more than 4 or 5 hours per day. P.M. me if you have any ?'s
 

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a good place to stay is in hessel at lindburg cottages, less trafic & right on hessel bay, kid can ride & play on the bay. cottages are very nice, they have bigger one's for families. only 30 miles from bridge.
 

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If you go mid week. The american inn in Munsing has an indoor water park. Most of the trails are farly straight and play area are plentiful. Lots of things to see close pictured rocks, big springs, miners falls and castle..
 

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If I am taking the kids north I would steer clear of the Newberry area. Even Paradise is a pain...

Munisings ok for families say midweek,like John posted.

If riding and not sight seeing (the draw for Munising & Paradise) I would recommend staying east of 75. It does not get much traffic and can get good snow and nice riding.

Honestly the best I have found for family riding is the Cheboygan / Black Lake area. Still in the lower but overlooked by most since most driving that far are going over the bridge.

We did the Manistee Lakes area last weekend (Stavation Lake, Jordan Valley) I was very surprized at how FEW throttle jockies there were and how MANY family riders in the area. I guess this late in the season is safer to be out with the kids. One guy had his child all passed out and asleep (sprawled out) in his lap... funny.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Inspite of all the good advice, the weather seems to dictate where we go.....of course.

Would really prefer to stay in lower but I after riding the lower last week and seeing how depleted the snow is getting , i'm a little skeptical of the mitten .

Gonna check some more l.p. places for snow.......
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
heslbay said:
YOUR NOT UP NORTH UNTILL YOU CROSS THE BRIDGE, BEFORE THE BRIDGE YOUR JUST IN THE NORTHERN LOWER! GO ALL THE WAY & BE DONE WITH IT.
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I want the kids to see real snow and trails !!!
 

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Oh - I agree but given the age of kids... habits of them and the trail throttle jockies....

My reasoning for the Cheboygan area is that it is very similar to that of the eastern UP (somewhat closer and no bridge toll) and will see the same sort of temps but less trail traffic since most go over the bridge.
 

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Well we settled on Jack PineLodge.

In talking to Digger I discovered there is plenty of area to take the kids off trail for literally days on end without getting stuck or lack of snow.He will be happy to show me where.

Food is right there, will bring gas so we don't have to worry about going there. It's rustic log cabin atmosphere sounds great.

Your definatley right about the lower though, Zdooman. I will be taking them to that area for their first day trip on the trails.If I remember right the Black Lake/Onaway area was pretty low traffic last time too.

We kinda decided to find a happy medium because of our fear of "fearless" trailriders. If we get to show them the trails it will be on Sunday afternoon , most likely. It will be a 3 day mini introduction to the world of U.P. sledding. The kids really want to know what the big deal is. Now they will , and prolly be addicted as well. If nothing else they get to celebrate the beaty of the North !!

Also, if it rains , i can head up to Munising.........


Thanx for the info. I have a feelinfg i may be visiting all of the above cause my boy is already showing signs of being a sledgeek !!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
~REV*GIRL~ said:
Well we settled on Jack PineLodge.

In talking to Digger I discovered there is plenty of area to take the kids off trail for literally days on end without getting stuck or lack of snow.He will be happy to show me where.

Food is right there, will bring gas so we don't have to worry about going there. It's rustic log cabin atmosphere sounds great.

Your definatley right about the lower though, Zdooman. I will be taking them to that area for their first day trip on the trails.If I remember right the Black Lake/Onaway area was pretty low traffic last time too.

We kinda decided to find a happy medium because of our fear of "fearless" trailriders. If we get to show them the trails it will be on Sunday afternoon , most likely. It will be a 3 day mini introduction to the world of U.P. sledding. The kids really want to know what the big deal is. Now they will , and prolly be addicted as well. If nothing else they get to celebrate the beaty of the North !!

Also, if it rains , i can head up to Munising.........


Thanx for the info. I have a feelinfg i may be visiting all of the above cause my boy is already showing signs of being a sledgeek !!

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Well apparently i was signed on as my Wife


She just signed up so she was logged in. Not used to this space invasion....yet
 

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zdooman said:
Oh - I agree but given the age of kids... habits of them and the trail throttle jockies....

My reasoning for the Cheboygan area is that it is very similar to that of the eastern UP (somewhat closer and no bridge toll) and will see the same sort of temps but less trail traffic since most go over the bridge.
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zdooman, That is good advice, I have a second home in Cheboygan on the river. I take my 5 year old son out with me all the time. Generally low traffic, if it is heavt traffic there are plenty of off trail opprotunities. The trails are groomed to perfection. I guess the secret is out.
 
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