TART Trail to Suttons Bay

What a beautiful morning for a bike ride along the TART trail to Suttons Bay!  The TART trail starts in Traverse City, but we chose a trail head closer to Suttons Bay, at Fouch Rd, only 11 miles each way.  The trail winds through farm land, hay fields, and orchards.  It is paved smooth and is off the busy roads, ideal for families and all riders.

Four of us set out mid-morning on the former railroad line while the day was still cool.

We stopped at the remnants of a historic potato barn.  Local farmers grew potatoes and stored them in this barn waiting for boxcars to be loaded headed to Chicago via Suttons Bay or Traverse City.  All that remains now is the stone shell and a small root cellar.


The stone shell now overlooks an apple orchard.


A small field of sunflowers stood on the top of a steep bank.

We rolled into Suttons Bay looking for a bit of refreshment before we turned around and rode back to our cars.  Suttons Bay has transformed these old telephone booths into information kiosks.

There is a lot more to see, but we didn’t stop to photograph them all.  I highly recommend this ride.  You can park along most of the cross roads and make the trip as short as you want.  The 22 mile round trip was ideal for us today.


5 thoughts on “TART Trail to Suttons Bay

  1. Fouch Road is my favorite starting point for this beautiful ride, although now that I have my electric assist I may go back to doing it from Traverse City! Hop Lot is always on the itinerary (they’re doing a particularly good job of pandemic safety measures). Good to know about the potato barn. Have always wondered what that was.

    1. Fouch Rd is a nice starting place for a shorter ride (22 miles total plus what you do in SB). We’ve also done it from the Cherry Bend trail head. That adds another 3-4 miles each way, I think. Yeah, the potato barn is a great place for a break. Perhaps you can join us sometime for the ride.

  2. We love the Tart Trail. We have ridden it all the way from Brick Wheels in TC to Suttons Bay before. We enjoy stopping at the Village Inn for lunch before doing the return trip. This summer we did a little shorter version and stopped at the Hop Lot in Suttons Bay for a refreshment before peddling back. Looks like you had a great day for a bike ride. We love the Bestie River Trail, too, from Beulah to Frankfort.

    1. Hi, Jane. Good to hear from you. Yes, I have ridden it from TC, but we wanted a round trip that was a bit shorter. It is a great ride from anywhere. We’ve done the Betsie River trail a few weeks ago and that is another great ride. However, due to high water, the route is dumped onto the streets before you get to the overlook just outside Frankfurt. Still, a very nice ride.

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