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Kal-Haven and Van Buren Trails

About the Kal-Haven Trail

The Kal-Haven Trail is a 33.5 mile long linear multi-use trail that links Kalamazoo, a major southwest Michigan city, to South Haven, a Lake Michigan resort area. The trail starts in South Haven on North Bailey Avenue and ends in Kalamazoo on 10th Street.

The route of the Kal-Haven Trail originally was a railroad completed in 1870.  The railroad bed has been converted to a trail with a limestone/slag surface. It is usable for all non-motorized bicycles, hiking, and snowmobiling (when there is a 4-inch snow base).  In 2004 Van Buren County obtained a use permit to operate and maintain The Kal-Haven Trail Sesquicentennial State Park.  Van Buren County continues to operate the trail under this permit.   

There are two staffed locations on the trail. The trailhead near Kalamazoo on 10th Street and the trailhead in South Haven on North Bailey Avenue. 

Hours of Operation: 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM, 7 days a week.  Trail fees are no longer required to access the Kal-Haven or the Van Buren Trails.  Due to the uncertainty of trail funding, we still, however, need your support.  Donations can be made to the Friends of the Kal-Haven Trail.  This organization is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that has supported the trail for years by financing many projects along the trail.  Contact information for the Friends of the Kal-Haven Trail is as follows:

Friends of the Kal-Haven Trail

c/o Van Buren County Road Commission, PO Box 156, Lawrence, MI 49064

www.friendsofkalhaventrail.org

Click below to open links to maps:

Kal-Haven Trail Map

Downtown Kalamazoo & South Haven Maps

About the Van Buren Trail

The Van Buren Trail is a 14 mile linear multi-use trail.  Its has an unimproved surface and runs from the City of Hartford to the City of South Haven.  There is parking at the Hartford trailhead, but very limited parking in South Haven.  We are in the process of planning a new trailhead with parking. 

The trail runs through open farmland, blueberry fields, dense brush and wooded areas.  This creates a nice, but challenging ride that is more suitable to mountain bikes.  The width of the trail varies from 10 to 18 feet.

The South Haven Trailhead is located on Lovejoy Street next to the water tower.  To find the trailhead, take LaGrange Street to Aylworth Avenue (next to South Haven High School across from McDonald's).  Go west on Aylworth Avenue to Kalamazoo Street.  Go South on Kalamazoo Street to Lovejoy Avenue.  The trail is a 0.1 miles to the west on Lovejoy Avenue on the south side of the street. 

The City of Hartford trailhead is located on Prospect Street.  Take North Center Street from light at West Main Street.  Go north about 0.3 mile to Prospect Street (across from the High School).  Go west on Prospect about 0.2 miles (just over the railroad tracks).  The trail is on the south side of the street.

Van Buren Trail Map 

 

Van Buren Trail Map 

For additional information regarding either the Kal-Haven or the Van Buren Trails, please contact Craig Ericksen at the Van Buren County Road Commission 269-674-8011, or send an email to vbcrc@comcast.net 

This page last updated on 7/10/2013.

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