Recognition comes in many forms and many forms of recognition continue to come in for the well deserving Copper Harbor Trails in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

On June 6, National Trails Day, the National Park Service officially designated the Copper Harbor Trails as a national recreation trail. The 30-mile trail system is already a Silver-level Ride Center, as determined by the International Mountain Bicycling Association.

In its press release, the park service noted that the Copper Harbor Trail system "has sweeping views of Lake Superior, extensive singletrack over cedar-planked bridges and boardwalks, flow and gravity trails, and routes that wind through old growth forests, along streams, inland lakes and places of historical significance.  The trails are also open for hiking, trail running, backcountry skiing, and snowshoeing."

Most recently, on June 23, the Copper Harbor Trails were voted No. 4 "most scenic mountain bike trail in the Eastern USA" by readers of singletrack.com. Nevermind the fact that Copper Harbor is solidly an upper Midwest destination (as are Duluth, Minnesota's Piedmont Trail, No. 1 in the poll results, and runner-up Cuyuna Lakes in Ironton, Minnesota, a bronze-level IMBA Ride Center) and not located out East.

Speaking of competitive online rankings of Midwest gems, on June 16 Duluth won the title of "Best outdoor town in America" beating out five other cities pitted against each other by Outside Magazine. The popularity of mountain biking as well as kayaking and cross-country skiing in the area apparently couldn't be overcome.