Touring Detroit & Dearborn, Michigan by Gravel Bike!

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
Calfee Tetra Adventure Review Bike @ Ford Motor Company World Headquarters

Detroit, Michigan

“Detroit is the largest and most populous city in the U.S. state of Michigan, the largest U.S. city on the United States–Canada border, and the seat of Wayne County. The municipality of Detroit had a 2019 estimated population of 670,031, making it the 24th-most populous city in the United States.” –

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
Riverside Park

“The city became the 4th-largest in the nation in 1920, after only New York City, Chicago and Philadelphia with the influence of the booming auto industry. With the expansion of the auto industry in the early 20th century, the city and its suburbs experienced rapid growth, and by the 1940s, the city remained as the fourth-largest in the country. However, due to industrial restructuring, the loss of jobs in the auto industry, and rapid suburbanization, Detroit lost considerable population from the late 20th century to the present. Since reaching a peak of 1.85 million in the 1950 census, Detroit’s population has declined by more than 60 percent.”

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
Wayne County Building

“In 1903, Henry Ford founded the Ford Motor Company. Ford’s manufacturing—and those of automotive pioneers William C. Durant, the Dodge Brothers, Packard, and Walter Chrysler—established Detroit’s status in the early 20th century as the world’s automotive capital. The growth of the auto industry was reflected by changes in businesses throughout the Midwest and nation, with the development of garages to service vehicles and gas stations, as well as factories for parts and tires.”

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
General Motors World Headquarters

Dearborn, Michigan

“Henry Ford was born on a farm here and later established an estate in Dearborn, as well as his River Rouge Complex, the largest factory of his Ford empire. He developed mass production of automobiles and based the world headquarters of the Ford Motor Company here. The city has a campus of the University of Michigan as well as Henry Ford College. The Henry Ford, the United States’ largest indoor-outdoor historic museum complex and Metro Detroit’s leading tourist attraction, is located here.” –

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
William Livingstone Memorial Lighthouse

In this video, JOM of the Gravel Cyclist crew enjoys an urban-suburban ride starting from Dearborn, Michigan. On a route of his own design, he wanders into Detroit catching sight of many buildings and complexes related to the auto industry, before heading over to Belle Isle followed by a look around downtown Detroit.

bicycle tour of detroit michigan
The long-abandoned Packard Automobile Plant

The tour makes its way to the long-abandoned Packard Automotive Plant before calling it a day back in Dearborn. Approximately 105kms / 65ish miles of randomness through Dearborn & Detroit.

Ride Experience Video

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  1. Avatar Bill Armstrong

    Thanks for sharing this, JOM. My parents both grew up in Detroit in the 30s-50s. They built the house where I grew up in the late 50s about 25 miles out of the city in what is now called Auburn Hills. At the time this was on the edge of the suburbs and our street was gravel, not paved. I have fond memories of riding my Stingray with fat tires and painted British racing green (my dad was a sports car enthusiast) through our neighborhood. We often went into Detroit for baseball games, shopping at the old Hudson’s store downtown, visiting Belle Isle, seeing movies at the old Cinerama theatre, and going to car shows at Cobo Hall. I now live in New York City, but still have family in the Detroit area, so visit often.

  2. Avatar Josephine Rivas Conley

    I also remember the gravel road my husband, myself and our first two little boys had purchased our first home in what was Ecorse Township no sidewalks & all Gravel roads around Dix Hwy and Northline , which became the the City of Southgate. Our home was on Helen St & Van Ness.
    We had a wonderful young neighborhood with lasting friendships during 1954 (house built) 1965!

  3. Avatar Jim Sommerdyk

    Excellent video, and quite surprised to see the TARDIS! Come visit Windsor when the border opens up!

    • JOM JOM

      Jim, I was rather PO’d I could not cross into the Great White North, but with Coronavirus, it is what it is. Hopefully in the future!

  4. Avatar CitizenAZ

    Thanks for the tour.

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