About Mariners Trail

2012 CoverMariners Trail is a 5.5 mile recreational trail along the shore of Lake Michigan between Manitowoc and Two Rivers in east central Wisconsin. The paved surface accommodates walkers, joggers, bikers, and in-line skaters.

The southern trailhead is at the Manitowoc Marina, while the trail terminates at the Lighthouse Inn in Two Rivers on the north. There is no usage fee; the trail is free to all users.

Access to the trail can be made virtually anywhere along its length, as the trail parallels major roads. Parking is available at both ends of the trail, and at numerous waysides. There are four motels either on the trail, or very close by.

At the north end, the trail ties into the Rawley Point Trail, which takes the user through Two Rivers and into Point Beach State Forest. This seven-mile section utilizes city streets, limestone surfaces, and a five-mile section through the State Forest.

At the southern end of the trail, the trail user can continue on a paved path along Lake Michigan, across the Manitowoc River on the 8th Street bridge, and then follow the trail along the south side of the river, past the car ferry dock, and into a residential area.

Restroom facilities are available on the trail just north of the Manitowoc Marina, at the Woodland Drive wayside at the approximate mid-point of the trail, and at several restaurants along the trail.

Mariners Trail is an excellent place for walking a dog. Dog walkers are asked to keep their pet on a leash and clean up after their dog.

In June, 2012, FOMT held a trail-side celebration ceremony in honor of the tenth anniversary of the Trail.

A video about Mariners Trail produced by Wisconsin Outdoor Fun is available here.

About Friends of Mariners Trail

Friends of Mariners Trail (FOMT) is a non-profit organization formed in 2003. The group has about 80 members, ranging from those who are very active and attend every meeting, to those who simply wish to make a contribution through their membership fee while not being active. The purpose of the group is expressed in its mission statement: The mission of FOMT is to act as an advocate for Mariners Trail, make suggestions for its improvement, and raise funds to assist the municipalities of Two Rivers and Manitowoc, Wisconsin with future development and enhancements to Mariners Trail.

FOMT organizes a trail cleanup each May, at which time members and friends clean litter and trash from the trail. Many members and other organizations help keep the trail clean at other times. Members also take part in the Brush Cleanups sponsored by the City of Two Rivers, at which time overgrown brush along the Trail is cut back.

The Friends of Mariners Trail also sponsor an annual trail photo contest. The best of the submitted photos are printed in the annual calendar which comes out in October and is sold at various sites in the area. Monetary prizes are awarded to the contest winners. For complete contest rules and entry form, click here.

Funds raised by the organization are used in various ways for trail improvement. In 2006, 2011, and 2013, there were major rerouting and paving projects initiated by FOMT, and jointly financed by FOMT and the City of Manitowoc. FOMT has helped furnish the trail by faciltating the donation of benches, purchasing and installing bike racks, and in 2013, a bike repair station at the Davis Street wayside. Two informational message boards, one near each end of the trail, were purchased and installed, and are updated regularly. It is foreseen that a repaving of the entire trail may be necessary in the next five to ten years, and a significant donation from FOMT to assist this work is envisioned.

In 2007, the Flowerbed Program was initiated. FOMT solicits community people who would be willing to plant and maintain a flowerbed along Mariners Trail. The program has been very successful, resulting in about 45 beds being cared for by local people. The beds have substatially enhanced the beauty along the trail, and are constantly commented on by trail users.

Blue HeronThe Sculpture project was initiated in 2010. Through this program, donors can make contributions for carefully-selected pieces of artwork to be placed along the trail. The program has been very successful, with four works placed at various locations in the first two years. The picture at the left shows one of the pieces, a six foot tall blue heron made from recycled steel. Green Bay artist Carl Vanderheyden created this work. Information about the project is available here

FOMT meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of each month, from February to October, at 6:30 pm, at the Chamber of Manitowoc County Building, 1515 Memorial Drive, Manitowoc. This location is right on the trail, about 0.6 miles north of Reed Avenue. Meetings are open to both members and non-members. A complete list of meetings, as well as a map, is located on the . No meetings are held in November and December, and the January meeting is a special dinner meeting for recognizing trail contributions and familiarizing potential new members with the organization.

Membership dues are $20 for an individual. Special family membership rates are also available. Complete information about joining is available on the membership form.

For more information about FOMT, you may email us at marinerstrail@gmail.com


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External Links
Chamber of Manitowoc County Manitowoc Area Visitors and Convention Bureau