Can You Bikepack on Isle Royale?

A person stands next to three bicycles loaded with gear while looking out to Lake Superior.
Bikepacking is the sport of exploration by bicycle, while carrying all the necessities needed for a multi-day journey or overnight camping.

NPS Photo

Bikepacking is permitted but limited on Isle Royale. According to the Superintendent's Compendium, bicycles and similiar wheeled devices may only be used in specified areas.

Bikepackers may utilize Isle Royale and its transportation options to service a bikepacking trip. Bikepackers need to carefully plan their trips, paying special attention to transportation, camping, and bicycle regulations.

A gravel path lined by green trees and shrubs.
There are small road systems in Rock Harbor and Windigo.

Claire Jackson

Bikepacking on Isle Royale

Bikepacking is permitted:

Bikepacking is not permitted:

  • On trails
  • In campgrounds
  • In designated wilderness areas (99% of the park)
  • Outside of Rock Harbor and Windigo developed areas

Bicycle Storage

Bicycles must be stored at public bike racks in Rock Harbor or Windigo for the duration of the visit.

Bicycles may not be ridden or walked on trails or in campgrounds. For this reason, bikepackers should be prepared to walk or pack their luggage and gear to their campsite.


Bikepackers need to be prepared to camp or stay at the Rock Harbor Lodge (reservations required). A camping permit is required to stay in a campground.

Campground stay limits must be observed. Rock Harbor campground has a one night stay limit. Multi-night stays may require backpacking to campgrounds outside of Rock Harbor or Windigo developed areas.

Traveling with a Bicycle

Bikepackers traveling to Isle Royale are typically touring a loop from Minnesota to Michigan, or vice versa. See ferry transportation services to determine which ferry routes and schedules support bikepacking transportation.

Transportation services require advance reservations, and transporting a bicycle may require additional fees.

  • Two people with backpacks on walk across a wooden bridge in the forest.
    Backpacking & Camping

    Prepare for your backpacking and camping trip using these resources.

  • A large blue and cream colored motor vessel at dock.
    How to Travel to Isle Royale

    Multiple ferries and a seaplane service transport visitors to the park.

  • People gather around a park ranger on a dock.
    For Your Safety

    As your trip gets near, use this guide to help prepare, learn what to expect, and consider how you will take responsibility for your safety.

Last updated: June 22, 2023