Spring is around the corner, and pretty soon it’ll be time to dust off the bike in the garage, get your tires pumped up and your chain lubricrated. Then head on off into the great outdoors. We have put together a list of all the best trails to venture on in the city. They all range from paved, urban trails, to dirt roads running along old rail paths. You’ll be sure to want to explore them all this summer though.
Running along Windsor’s waterfront, Riverside Park is actually made up of a collection of parks that span 5.5 km (3.4 miles) from the Ambassador Bridge to Hiram Walker’s. It makes up a portion of the Waterfront Trail a long distance trail that aims to run along the entire shoreline of the great lakes, passing through Toronto and Niagara Falls along the way. Most notably the trail runs through the Odette Sculpture park where one can see a collection of sculptures eerily reminiscent of Edward Scissorhands. The trail also offers amazing views of the Detroit skyline.
On the opposite side of the river is Detroit’s answer to Riverside Park. Like its Canadian counterpart, the Detroit Riverwalk is composed of a series of parks that run along the river from Fort Wayne to Belle Isle a distance of 6 miles (9.6 km). The trail also has a direct connection with the Dequindre Cut, offering a direct route to Eastern Market from the river. The Detroit Riverwalk is one of Detroit’s recent success stories and was recently voted one of the Top 10 riverfronts by USA Today.
Rising up from the river, the Dequindre Cut follows an old rail path 1.6 miles (2.6 km) to Eastern Market. The rail path is sunken below the street which allows for a nice green oasis in a concrete, traffic ensnarled jungle. The green path alongside the trail has been allotted for a future transit development.
Like the Dequindre Cut, the Chrysler Canada Greenway also follows an old rail path. This is by far the longest trail on this list stretching almost 50 km (31 miles) from the edge of Windsor, all the way down through Kingsville, to Colisanti’s Tropical Gardens in Ruthven, passing scenic countryside all the way. This trail is unpaved, so it is best travelled on with a mountain bike.
Belle Isle Park
Detroit’s Belle Isle is truly that. Forests and marshes combine with more urban areas as well as being home to a Conservatory and Aquarium. Biking trails ring around the island as well as run through the middle of it. Since the State bought the park, a whole swath of improvements will be coming to the park- also, you don’t need to pay an entry fee if you bike in.
Named after the Algonquian word for Lake St. Clair, the Ganatchio trail is an 8 km (5 mile) trail that runs along the end of the Detroit River and along the shoreline of Lake St. Clair in Windsor’s east end. The trail also features an extension running up the Little River. It is part of the City of Windsor’s plan to create a cohesive trail ringing the city.
Windsor’s tallest (and possibly only) hill, makes Malden Park an ideal location for mountain biking enthusiasts. At 180 acres in size, the top of the hill offers a breathtaking view of the city, and a wide variety of trails ensures there is plenty of variations of terrain to explore.
Devonwood Conservation Area
Located near Windsor Airport, Devonwood Conservation Area features one of the last fragments of forest located within city limits. The park boasts 4.5 km (2.8 miles) of trails winding throughout, with a connecting trail to the Walker Homesite Park.