Explore the best trails in Minnesota with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
dogs on leash
cross country skiing
Went winter hiking off of Hill Lake. There was only one hiking trail and it ended at Lucky Lake 0.7 mi away. The trail was well groomed and maintained. There are also several, well-maintained cross country ski trails available I did not use. I would rate the difficulty at easy to moderate during the winter. It was very quiet and enjoyable.
Great trails all year-round. Many different loops for xc-skiing, hiking, running or walking. There is a small fitness loop with equipment for workout activities then larger loops for hiking and skiing. A few hidden spots for rock climbing are used by local groups and 7+ miles of single track bike trail has been added in the recent years by a few hardworking people and trail crews. Terrain is easy to moderate for hiking and skiing with trails all marked with difficulty. There is also a small shelter located at the far east-end of the long loop.
Great little trail to get a little climb (comparatively speaking for the area). There are spring fed streams running throughout that stay open during the winter, and nice views from the upper trail. Most of the people we met were walking their dogs. During the summer it would be a great place to go to picnic, as there are several tables along the way. The park is currently open daily, not April-October as listed.
The map shows it over by cook but it's actually between Soudan and Ely. It's a beautiful area to hike and snowshoe around. It's a little over seven miles to see it all. Most of its wide enough to have a separate snowshoe and ski track. You do need a parking pass since it's a state park but well worth the $5 and make sure to stay off the groomed ski trails at the north end of bear head lake around the campground area.
I have done the trail several times. West to east seems like the best way to go. One of the best times is early October when the bugs are gone and the days are cool. We did it last time hiking 3 miles in the first day. The second to the bridge at Agomok. The third at Strup Portage and the 4th night at Becosin. If you go save some time to go down to the range cabin at Kekagabic Lake. It was in great shape Oct of 15 when I did it last hand had zero issues staying on the trail. Compared to many of the northern sections of the SHT this is a not that hard in terms of ups and downs. It's best done with two parties leaving from opposite ends. You meet in the middle and exchange car keys. After doing the last 60 miles of the JMT this summer and going over Forrester Pass and Mt. Whitney, this is a piece of cake.
The best weekend hike in the BWCA. Check the amount of permits out the weekend you go. It's best done counter clockwise. If you get there and see cars in the lot you may want to do it in the clockwise direction. The best sites are on found going counter clockwise, which is the way most people do it. You have three choices that way.
This is a primary canoe route into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). This is part of the Superior National Forest an is administered by the United States Forest Service (USFS). Permits are available from USFS and camping is at designated sites. The two portages involved are well used. Limited motor use is allowed up into Pipestone Bay of Basswood. Portages are able to accomodate up to 16 ft boats on portage wheels and thus very easy to follow and always clear. The route starts at the USFS campground/boat landing on Fall Lake. Once you pass Mile Island on Fall Lake, you are in the BWCA. The first portage is where Fall Lake out flows into Newton Lake. The outflow is actually a low head dam. It is under water and you won't normally see it. It is a hazard. Stay clear. Strong currents are present. Follow Newton to it's outflow which is a rapids that enters Pipestone Bay. Steep hill (for those pulling boats, it is known as Heart Attack Hill) as portage drops into Pipestone. NO MOTOR line starts part way up Pipestone. This puts you in position to access the Basswood River several nice water falls an rapids. Beware of current. Basswood River is border between US and Canada. Canadian side is Quetico Provincial Park. You need seperate permits to enter Quetico Park and must clear customs. There is a Canadian custom's an Quetico Ranger station on the east end of Basswood. This is a headwaters for a watershed that ends in Hudson Bay! It is an easy route but use caution near rapids and falls. They have been deadly. They can suck unsuspecting people into danger before you know your in trouble.