Explore the most popular forest 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.

Check this area out. Today I came in from the Jordan end of trail. Did 7.3 miles. Easy trail. The ice is the problem now. As it is with most trails I've been on. Trail is on River. Runs into a maze of trails that is in the Louisville swamp area. Saw no other people. Would be tough to do this trail in warmer weather because of the mud. So get out and enjoy all this area before the spring thaw. Lots of peaceful miles of trails to enjoy.

Enjoyed the hike during winter time. Be sure to not go during the icy season. All trails would be mostly covered in ice.

Quick hike. Good for light walking/hiking in the summer. A tad slippery in the winter.

great variance of grade!!

hiking
7 days ago

A family favorite as it is close to home but quiet enough to feel removed from the hustle and bustle of “suburb/city life”. Various trails boasting different arboreal species makes this park reserve nearly impossible to tire of, and perfect for an afternoon stroll through the woods. Yes, certain times of the year are more dreadful for flies, but it can be alleviated with adjusting your plans to come in a different season to avoid this annoyance.

walking
7 days ago

Sweeping prairie views, peppered with small lakes, rolling hills, and wooded paths. Take your bikes or simply your feet for a half day of enjoying the outdoors. All paved, and mostly open, so bring sunscreen and water.

hiking
7 days ago

Louisville Swamp area is a gem. Just a short drive outside of the Twin Cities and along Hwy 169, but remote enough with this in mind. Nestled among an oak Savannah, the prairie trail curls down to follow the quiet and winding Minnesota river. Known to flood, plan accordingly, and be open to detours. There are old ruins of a farm from a bygone era, a rather large boulder from an even longer passed era, and vast and sweeping views of prairie and river. A quintessential south-central Minnesota landscaping, this hike is perfect for a weekend afternoon. (Hiked: October/2018)

hiking
7 days ago

A peaceful forest respite among perhaps a noisier tourist’s “up north”. The trees are tall and creaky, the river slow and quiet. It was a beautiful hike spent amongst the crunch of pine needles under our feet and the sun seeping in from above. (Hiked June/2015)

We hiked this on 12/23/18 at night (with headlamps; very dark!) after a beautiful snowfall. It had its challenges, but well worth the view, even at night.
My 8 year old was able to hike it with no problem in the snow. Trials are well blazed.

hiking
7 days ago

Quick winter hike. No trees on the trail and was nice and packed down for just boots.

The trails are alright, but the fishing is even better. So many excellent trout fishing holes on this creek.

fishing
10 days ago

Beautiful, an absolute blast. If you enjoy trout fishing, bring your pole and catch your limit.

hiking
10 days ago

Easy trail if you love to explore the outdoors, watch out for horses.

hiking
10 days ago

Got a bit turned around but well worth it.

A great place to hike year round. Definitely wear spikes in the winter, the trek up and down at the beginning and end, gets real icy! If you have someone that needs an easier trek up in the beginning, the Duluth Traverse trail has a good path up with some switchbacks to break up the elevation. Beautiful sights, a neat hardwood Forrest with a lot of interesting vegetation to check out too!

Nicely groomed in the winter . Signs say it’s for hikers and CC. We were yelled at right away by some CC skiers to get off the trails, but didn’t. It’s a great hike in the winter. However, if hikers aren’t to be on it in the winter, there needs to be better signage stating as much.

hiking
14 days ago

This is a surprising little gem! The terrain varies, you get a great view of the river valley, and it’s close to the Twin Cities. A couple warnings - it can be precarious on the downhills with snow/ice, and you have to park in the lot to the north as Flying Cloud drive is closed. Definitely recommend!!

Had a great hike today- well packed down, snowshoes not needed unless you want to walk the river, or off trail. At about 1.3 miles in we might’ve wanted our snowshoes but it was ok. We turned around at 1.7 to head back.

A great beautiful afternoon!!

on Northland Arboretum

cross country skiing
14 days ago

This was a beautiful hike. We did this in August of 2017 on our cross-country move from Boston to Seattle. The weather was perfect, and the views were breath taking

Great Trail, Great Views

Winter hike with the dog - beautiful! Lack of foliage created great views, and the trail was in great shape.

1.2.19 - Skipped the loop and just did the out and back part. Would’ve been nice to have snow shoes but with a little extra effort it turned out to be a beautiful winter hike!

Moderate hike where you get to walk through some beautiful Minnesota North woods and also peer over cliffs on these two beautiful lakes. We camped at bear lake campground and will be back!

For snow shoeing this trail was fabulous. We went right after a 6” snowfall that was on top of 12”+ of snow from the previous week. The only down fall is the parking. Did a quick shovel to get the truck off the road and we were good to go.

walking
20 days ago

One of my favorite parks in the cities. It’s quiet here, once you get on the trails. In the winter the paths are cleared (even clear after all the rain/ice we just had). There are many alternate paths to take once you’re in and you can make loops big or small depending on your energy level. Parking and getting to a trail is a cinch. The trail has maps and markers through so it’s easy to keep track of where you want to go next. It’s a mix of woods and prairie scenery. Just love this place. It’s great for walking and bicycling.

hiking
20 days ago

We did this loop twice today, a few days after all that rain froze in the Twin Cities. The trail was walkable without too much difficulty due to ice. It’s a short loop, not quite my favorite considering all the great trails we have around the cities. It has some mild elevation changes and twists and turns which kept things interesting.

way more urban than I am used to hiking. With no leaves (December), traffic was heard throughout most of the park. but for an urban park it was a pleasant little surprise. I'm not sure how AllTrails measured 8.4 miles though - it must have been through lots of doubling back between loops.

one of my favorite quick hikes, the view from the top is outstanding! must use top entry wile road construction has closed off access to lower lot currently.

hiking
26 days ago

I did a solo hike of the trail in August and it kicked my butt. I am a moderately experienced BWCA paddler but had never done a hiking trip let alone a solo trip. However, I did a ton of research and felt quite prepared. It was very reassuring to read Christine's review below. Everything Christine said echoes how I felt. I planned on a 3 night stay hoping to stay on Hustler and Pageant Lake. This hike completely broke me down. I also got lost at the same point she turned around but luckily found the trail after searching for 30 min..it was so easy, how could you not find it?? ;) Anywho, by the time I got to Shell lake I could barely move. I continued past the first site along the trail on the western shores because it felt like such an unwelcoming site - essentially a huge rock slab with no shade. I ended up bushwhacking my way to the NE site below Little Shell. It was a decent site but faced the bay and could not see the sunset. This only worsened my low morale. I spent the night and booked it out of there right away the next morning. I didn't have any desire to continue on this overgrown trail. I think I'll stick to paddling or trying this later in the season when the leaves have fallen.

Do your research before doing this hike and purchase All Trails Pro version. It saved my butt and honestly was the only way to get through some areas. Check out my page if you want to see my path - it varied a bit from what's posted here. Cheers and happy hiking!

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