Fort Custer Recreation Area

MODERATE 60 reviews
#1 of 4 trails in

Fort Custer Recreation Area is a 7.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Charleston Twp, Michigan and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, horses, and mountain biking and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

7.1 miles
269 feet

dogs on leash


horseback riding

mountain biking


3 months ago

This is the red trail loop at Ft Custer. This is a really beautiful trail, lots of changing scenery! As with the green trail, it is mostly very narrow and lots of blind curves, so if you're a hiker I would recommend hiking towards bike traffic. Stay alert and get out of the way... in my experience on these trails, bikers don't have much time to slow down.

3 months ago


3 months ago

A great trail. peaceful. A very enjoyable afternoon. I took my time, and enjoyed every minute of it.

5 months ago

The trail is the most well-maintained trail I have ever been on. It is not that steep, however, the red trail is both long and beautiful. It is definitely a mountain bike trail. I would love to bike it someday. I also love there are horse trails too!

trail running
6 months ago

Ran the red bike trail on a cold April, monday morning. No traffic on the trail, but did see other cars in the lot when we were done. It is definitely worn well, so they do get plenty of bikers. Great views, not much tripping hazards, well worth the drive

7 months ago

Im a 29 yr Winter Back-Packer and after 6 years of dating my girlfriend she decided to give it a try and find out why for 29yrs I have enjoyed Hammocking in the deep freeze. although there are many beautiful places to go I chose the trails in Fort Custer to be her 1st winter trail Pack-In and camp-out. Here's why:. Its Easy, Its Beautiful, Its Quite, Its Close to Emergency's (If Needed it was 5 degrees at night) No body is hardly ever there (I may see a dog walker or 2 and the Trail I picked was only a 7 mile Loop with camp at the 5 mile mark giving only a 2 mile to hike back to truck if we needed it for emergency reasons(It was her 1st winter pack-in/camp-out and remember it was 5 degrees at night and 27 during day) If anyone is thinking about testing new gear,trying a 1st winter pack-in/camp-out or just enjoying a nice winter day hike Fort Custer has it. Trails are marked very well so if you can read a map or colored dots on trees then you will with no problems feeling safe and not get lost in Custer. These are All things a beginner should learn and look for during a winter Pack-in or hike. Enjoy! ( the water is turned off in campgrounds but all sites are open and Pit Toilets are available during winter season)

10 months ago


Saturday, June 10, 2017

Mt. biking ( red loop) is super narrow!

Monday, January 09, 2017

Very easily manageable trail in southwest Michigan. Be careful when hiking as mountain bikers frequent the loop. A great loop to get outside and enjoy a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.

mountain biking
Sunday, July 03, 2016

Yellow trail is a nice short easy ride. Green tall is challenging at times but absolutely amazing! Trails are well marked and very well maintained. A very fun ride.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Challenging at times.

mountain biking
Sunday, July 12, 2015

Follow up to yesterday's comment ...

I finally rode the Red Trail today. I would consider my riding skills at moderate & the Red Trail as 4 of 5 difficulty. With that said, it was the coolest trail that I have been on so far ... albeit my riding experience is somewhat limited. A couple places I had to walk the bike because of the difficulty, but there are also lots of challenging sections that I managed to pedal through that were obstacles that I have never tried before. Great fun & great test for my current riding skills!!

mountain biking
Saturday, July 11, 2015

Blue trail is nice, short, easy ride around Jackson Hole Lake & Whitford Lake. About 4 miles & can be completed in less than half an hour. Nice trail that I would rate a 2 difficulty.

Green trail is much more difficult. 7 miles around Eagle Lake that I have only ridden once so far. Plenty of sections where I had to get off the bike and walk, but I'm not a seasoned rider either. I would rate this a 4 difficulty.

Red trail is 8.6 miles long ... have not ride this trail yet, so I cannot offer any comments at this time.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Not for the casual mountain biker. Some of the trails are easy and fun. Others are way too narrow and have way too many sandy areas.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

I hike the Whitmore and Jackson Hole Lake trails often. I like it because it is a true loop trail and you don't have to backtrack. It is an easy and well maintained trail with an occasional view of the water. Not much wildlife in the park. Some swans and ducks on the lake. Saw one heron on Saturday. The trail is dry now, but can be muddy. I have heard and seen sandhill cranes out here (near the Whitmore Lake parking area) in previous years. Ticks are a problem in summer months so make sure your dog is protected.

mountain biking
Monday, July 28, 2014

Had a great time with my son. I use to mountain bike back before there marked trails to do so. Riding on these trails was great. Lots of whoops and speed. We will be back

mountain biking
Saturday, July 26, 2014

For my first real mountain biking experience this was awesome. It had its challenges with some hills and occasional sand. Some fast hills. I will defiantly go again!

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

For hiking, I would recommend the blue trail (Whitford Lake Trail). It is about 3.5 miles and it is fairly easy with a few hilly spots. The trails goes around two lakes, but you can really only get a good view of the second one. I would also recommend bug spray if it is summertime.

Monday, August 05, 2013

Red trail was a lot of fun to ride, not for beginners. Veryyyyy fun mtn bike trail

mountain biking
Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Great riding for all skill levels. Some trails not clearly marked at intersections, tees and forks which will cause confusion for new folks. Not too busy most days so newbies won't feel overwhelmed for the most part.

mountain biking
Saturday, March 23, 2013

Great trails! If only there were more like these ones in Southern Lower Michigan!

mountain biking
Thursday, September 20, 2012

What a great trail!!! I did the Red Trail today and it was amazing. Very clearly marked. I only passed 2 hikers on my ride, given it's a Thursday at noon so there shouldn't be too much activity.

The scenery was great but I really wasn't able to look very much, the trail was incredibly demanding. Lots of VERY steep drops and inclines/declines. This is definitely not a leisurely bike ride!!!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Somewhat busy, and a ton of flies!! :-(

Good place for meeting up with people and being social but not a back to nature sort of park. It was ok, but i probably won't return!

Sunday, July 01, 2012

This is a great place to spend a day. Loads of trails, lakes, and wildlife to see.
One word of warning; if you are looking for a place with little other people there are certainly better places.
But if you are looking for a pedestrian hike and would like to meet others this a great place. With tons of camping comes tons of people. There are some very impressive places to have a family cook out and a really nice beach.
All in all this is a very well kept and manicured set of trails.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Great scenic paths. You get great views of woodland, meadows, and Eagle lake all on the same hike.

mountain biking
Monday, September 05, 2011

Awesome ride! There are multiple trails ranging from easy to very difficult, plenty of single track! The trails are very well marked and color coded. As a bonus the park has a nice campground and beach/swimming area. Highly recommended! This park also hosts an annual race.

16 days ago

20 days ago

mountain biking
2 months ago

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