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Western Michigan prof wants to form Great Lakes "multi-modal" trail

SAUGATUCK, MI (WTAQ) - Biking, hiking, and paddling enthusiasts will meet this week to consider forming a 7,000 mile recreational route around the Great Lakes.  

Western Michigan geography professor Dave Lemberg is helping organize the "Great Lakes Coastal Trail Conference," to be held Thursday and Friday in Saugatuck Michigan.  

Lemberg says the goal is to integrate existing projects, and connect them to create a "multi-modal" trail route close to the Great Lakes' waters in the Canadian provinces and eight U.S. states including Wisconsin.  

Efforts are moving ahead on a four-state Lake Michigan Water Trail in Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan.  

Lemberg said a complete Great Lakes trail would be longer than the famous Appalachian and Pacific Crest trails combined -- and it could draw more tourists and economic development.  

Lemberg tells the Grand Rapids Press in Michigan that people go to Europe for summer biking and trekking, because the Great Lakes region is not set up for it. In his words, "It's about time we were." 

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)