It is well-known that we have a lot of snow in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In fact, Marquette often receives over 200 inches of snowfall in the winter. How do we survive the long winter and keep our spirits up? We get out and play in the fresh fluff!

Northern Michigan University has partnered with the Noquemanon Trail Network (NTN) to provide current NMU students FREE access to an interconnected, year-round, non-motorized land and water trail system and the ability to check out cross-country skis, snowshoes and fat bikes for daily use.

The unique NMU-NTN partnership offers students unlimited access to hundreds of miles of trails, free equipment rentals and access to lessons. In turn, this provides a value-added benefit for the NMU student experience, encourages sustainable transportation and recreation habits, and provides healthy, year-round outdoor activities that are easily accessible from campus.


NMU Trailhead Logo

NMU Trailhead

If you already have equipment, you can start right from campus! The recently constructed NMU Trailhead connects campus to the North Trails and South Trails of the NTN. This non-motorized trail is intended for mountain bikers, trail runners, hikers, and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts. The on-campus trailhead serves as a meeting place for everyone from NMU students and employees to Marquette community members. Just follow the signs from the NMU Trailhead to the trails!

Important Trail Information

  • Trail use contains inherent risk. Use trails at your own risk.
  • Trails are multipurpose, unless signed otherwise, so please respect all trail users and “Be Nice, Say Hi!”.
  • Stay updated with trail etiquette, read trail reports, and be prepared for weather changes.
  • For Emergencies while on the trail dial 9-1-1.
Bicycle Friendly Campus

Northern Michigan University was awarded bronze-level Bicycle Friendly University status by the League of American Bicyclists.

Free Rental Equipment

On Campus:

Students can rent fat tire bikes from campus at the Wildcat Fit Zone (during Fall & Winter Semesters) located between Hunt/Van Antwerp and Magers/Meyland Halls. Fat tire bikes are also available at the Outdoor Recreation Center (ORC) in the PEIF (limited to 3 bikes during Fall/Winter Semesters). Snowshoes and cross country skis are available for rental on campus at the ORC.

Off Campus:

Students can also rent fat tire bikes, cross country skis, and snowshoes from the NTN Forestville Trailhead. Forestville Trailhead amenities include free parking, a warming lodge, indoor bathrooms, a hospitality desk staffed 7 days a week (during the winter), and canine-friendly trails.

What to Bring

  • NMU IN (to verify that you are a student)
  • Comfortable winter biking clothing (here are some tips)
  • Water bottle and a snack (if you’re planning to be gone for a long time)
  • Headlamp (if you’re going after dark)

Helmets and fat tire bikes are provided free of charge. If you prefer to use your personal helmet, you are welcome to do so.