Prints & greeting cards of this Mackinac Bridge Walk photo
The Mackinac Bridge Walk begins at 7 AM and no one is permitted to begin their walk after 11AM. Two lanes of traffic are closed for the start of the walk and motor vehicle traffic is limited to one lane in each direction. Midway in the morning, the walkers are reduced to one lane, allowing two lanes for traffic heading south.
Although the direction of the walk was south to north in the early years, the walk is now always from the Upper Peninsula to the lower Peninsula. A fleet school buses takes the majority of the walkers from the Mackinaw City side to St. Ignace. Other walkers use the busses to return to the UP. There is no fee to walk the bridge, but there is a $5 charge for the bus. The busses run from the Old State Dock in Mackinaw City from 5:30 AM until 2:30 PM.
To manage the 30-80,000 people who walk the bridge, the following are NOT permitted: smoking, signs, banners, umbrellas, bicycles, roller skates, skateboards, wagons and other similar devices. Baby strollers and wheelchairs are allowed on the bridge during the walk. The ONLY animals permitted are working service dogs.
There are no rest rooms on the bridge, but there are huge banks of portable toilets at both ends. Although the walk can be completed in about an hour, the typical walk will take about 2 hours. No running or jogging is permitted.
In 2015, 600 runners and wheeling athletes are permitted to run across the Mackinac Bridge at the start of the walk. They are selected by a lottery a this web site. There is a fee for participation in the walk.
New in 2015, there will be a Mighty Mac Swim. 64 pre-registed swimers will attempt to swim across the Straits of Mackinac, starting at 7AM. In addition to the $200 entry fee, qualified swimmers must raise $2,800 for Habitat for Humanity to participate in the Mighty Mac Swim. The intended swim route will be north to south, just outside the 450-yard Labor Day security zone maintained by Homeland Security on each side of the bridge. East or west of the bridge will be determined by the direction of currents on the morning of the swim.
For many years, there was a walking race at the beginning of the Mackinac Bridge Walk. Competitors were required to walk heal to toe and running or jogging could result in a disqualification. The mightymac.org Webmaster competed in the walk in 1967 at age 13 and finished 5th in his age group with a time of about 56 minutes.