The Trail

The Nakwema Trailway will traverse through Traverse City, Acme, Elk Rapids, Eastport, Norwood, and Charlevoix. TART Trails and Top of Michigan Trails Council, together with Networks Northwest and in cooperation with local and state governments, are collaborating to close the 45+ mile gap between the Little Traverse Wheelway in Charlevoix and the TART Trails’ networks in Acme. By closing this gap, the landmark trail will create a continuous 325-mile trail network, including the statewide Iron Belle Trail, helping Michigan lead the nation as “The Trails State.”

A year-round destination for outdoor recreation and transportation, the Nakwema Trailway will be accessible by individuals of all ages and abilities for work and play. The trail will connect over 25 protected natural areas, granting unmatched access to the region’s iconic shoreline. The Trailway will offer a safe, non-motorized option to move through communities and explore the beauty of northwest Lower Michigan. Community benefits and trail user experience will drive the design of the trail. Trail development will ensure the goals of elevating our region’s rich cultural and natural resources, and providing important access in harmony with the natural environment. We invite you to explore the beautiful land, water, woods, and people connected throughout this corridor. Find your way on the Nakwema Trailway.

Click on the trail segments above for information about planning and development efforts up and down the corridor.

To learn more about the life cycle of a trail project, from concept to construction, click here (PDF).



The economic benefits of a trail system go far beyond simply bringing visitors to our area to enjoy, spend money, etc. Having a place to live with quality recreational opportunities and amenities is a critical component that helps our area companies attract and retain great employees. It’s a pretty simple formula: Great employees make great companies; great companies make great communities. The Nakwema Trail is a terrific addition to our area that will help employers create and retain jobs.

Andy Hayes
President, Northern Lakes Economic Alliance