New to the Upper Peninsula Hiking scene? Looking for one of the best hikes in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula? Look no further. Marquette’s Sugarloaf Mountain is the perfect hike for any and everyone looking to get the most out of their day in the UP. If you’re here for the fall foliage consider yourself lucky and if you aren’t, consider yourself blessed.

Getting to Sugarloaf Mountain

upper peninsula hiking

Sugarloaf Mountain is located in Marquette, Michigan. Marquette is one of the major cities in the Upper Peninsula and has a tremendous variety of outdoor activities to choose from. With the amount of hikes Marquette offers, Sugarloaf will check all the boxes for your day on the mountain.

Sugarloaf is one of the most popular and hiked trails in Marquette. The hike is short, scenic and close to town. The access to the trailhead is adjacent to the parking lot and the elevation gain to reach an unbelievable summit, is a piece of cake. This hike is great for everyone but especially welcoming to beginners.

Follow highway 550 out of town for about 10 minutes to get to Sugarloaf Mountain. Sugarloaf is one of the best hikes that requires little energy to venture too. The easiest and most direct route is head north towards Presque Isle and make a left onto Big Bay Rd. Once you have hit Big Bay road (550)  you will follow that for a few miles and find the parking lot on the right side of the main road.

Upper Peninsula Hiking - Hiking Sugarloaf

The Sugarloaf Mountain Trailhead is adjacent to the parking lot. When you begin the hike there are two routes to choose from. Easy and Difficult. These routes will connect to a main fork in the trail halfway up the mountain 

  • Easy Route – Easy with stairs leading to a fork with more stairs
  • Hard Route – Easy but no stairs until the main fork in the trail

The beginning of the trail is the most scenic besides the summit. The difficult trail provides a nice canopy of trees and a steep beginning that eventually becomes a gradual climb. The easy route makes a wider and less direct route and almost entirely stairs.

Coming from the difficult route, the second part of the hike is when you hit the trail fork. You will see a trail split (including signage) after a bit of a flat section. When you see this, go LEFT and follow the stairs up the mountain. You will continue on these stairs and then a few other sections of stairs until you have arrived at the summit.

YES! Finally, the summit. For those hiking this trail who are in good physical shape should expect this trail too take about 20 minutes to the summit. Maybe even less if you’re moving at a good clip. The summit has three different platforms that provide you with some unbelievable views of Marquette and Lake Superior.

upper peninsula hiking

Sugarloaf Mountain Recap


  • Hike Time: 20 minutes up and about 10 down
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Scenery: INCREDIBLE from summit
  • Access: VERY accessible
  • Parking: Plenty but can get crowded on weekends
  • Crowds: BUSY on weekends
  • Alltrails Map

More than Upper Peninsula Hiking

If you have any other Upper Peninsula hiking recommendations I would love to hear about them. I have many more trails to write about but even more to experience. If you are looking for some more info about Marquette, please take a gander through my chasing fall colors in Marquette piece.

Work up an appetite after a long drive or hike? Here are some restaurants that you should check when coming to Marquette. Need to find the best cup of coffee in town? Here are some of Marquette’s Best Cafes . For all those visitors who need more, contact me here directly if you would like a 1/2 day tour or a one hour photo session. I look forward to seeing you in Marquette or somewhere else in the world.


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