Cam of Grand Haven asked the Grand Haven Tribune, “What the heck are those green and white ‘35’ signs I’ve see around Grand Haven? They have a picture of a bicycle and the number on them. Is it some kind of MSU thing?”
No, Sparty is not involved.
Nor is the Michigan Department of Transportation.
Those signs mark one of the routes of the United States Bicycle Route System.
The signs we see around here are for USBR 35, which runs all the way from Mississippi north to Sault Ste. Marie. The Michigan section runs along the West Michigan lakeshore from New Buffalo through Grand Haven and northward, across the Mackinac Bridge and north to the Soo.
In the Grand Haven area, it runs along Lakeshore Drive into the city, up along Sheldon Road before heading north onto Harbor Island and over the drawbridge connector into Ferrysburg.
In Ferrysburg, the route follows Pine Street to Third Street, then north along 174th Avenue to Dogwood Drive, which it follows until 180th Avenue, where it goes north to Hickory Street, then west on Hickory to Palm Drive and Black Lake Road to Pontaluna Road, then north past P.J. Hoffmaster State Park on Lake Harbor Road into Muskegon.
According to its website, the U.S. Bicycle Route System is a web- and smartphone-based application. Its mapping is based on “established long-distance bicycle touring routes that cross longer distances, preferably connected to other routes along the way.”
The website also includes destinations that may be important to long-distance bicyclists — such as where to buy groceries, restaurants, lodging and camping sites. “They are also places to meet people and take a break along the way in an interesting place,” the website says.
The route data is available for download for use on GPS devices when no web access is available.