Top 5 Scenic Five-Mile Running Routes in Door County

  1. Gills Rock to Northport This route takes you along the northernmost portion of highway 42, which is the well-known “curvy road” that snakes back and forth through the trees. Park in Gills Rock and follow the road to the ferry landing at Northport, then double back for the full route.
  2. Waters End Road This trans-peninsular road and its steep but brief hill is one of my favorites. To get the full four-mile trans-peninsula experience, start at the bay side of Water’s End road in Sister Bay, and have someone pick you up across on the shore of Lake Michigan. If you need a longer route that loops, start at the bay and run up the hill to Old Stage road. Turn right on Old Stage and run south to Scandia road. Turn right on Scandia and follow it back into Sister Bay. Finish your run through the picturesque town of Sister Bay and end where you started.
  3. Ephraim Begin your run on Anderson Dock in the town of Ephraim. Turn right on highway 42 and run south through town. Run along the bay until you reach Brookside lane, and turn left. Brookside will bear right and become Hidden Spring road. Follow Hidden Spring to a fork and turn right on German road, then take Norway street left about half a mile to Moravia street. Turn left on Moravia and follow it to highway 42. Turn left on 42 and return to Anderson Dock. This loop is about four and a half miles, and there are plenty of little but steep hills. If you prefer a flatter route, simply double back on highway 42. As Ephraim is a buzzing little village in the summer and fall, run early in the morning to avoid most traffic and pedestrians. If you don’t mind dodging others, run here in the evening for a sunset backdrop.
  4. Ridges Road This route takes you along beautiful Bailey’s Harbor. Begin near the marina and run north to Ridges road. Turn right onto Ridges and jog through the Ridges County Park about three miles. Take the road all the way to the end of the little peninsula and double back for a six-mile route. This road is fairly quiet. Try it early in the morning for a gorgeous view of the sunrise.
  5. Horseshoe Bay Road This road abutting the bay south of Egg Harbor is picturesque and flat. Begin in Frank Murphy Park and run north on Bay Shore drive and then Horseshoe Bay road to Bluff Pass, then double back for a five-mile route. To add challenge and a little distance, complete a loop. Climb Bluff Pass, take Sunny Point road right for about two miles, turn right again on Horseshoe Bay road, and stay on Horseshoe Bay until it becomes County Highway B. Follow County Highway B to Bay Shore drive and back into Frank Murphy Park for about six-and-a-half miles.