Explore the most popular waterfall 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.

This is one of my favorite hikes on the shore. My friend Scott introduced it to me. We set out on cold winters day to climb the waterfall at cut log. It was my first foray into ice climbing and I found it both exhilarating and terrifying. I have since returned several times to enjoy the path and the amazing trees found on the way. Though I’ve no intention of climbing the drip again, I hope that I may find myself back here again someday.

hiking
21 hours ago

Easy trail with good paths. Start at the falls and stroll to the Mississippi. A nice walk.

Short hike, with beautiful up close view of the falls. Great place to visit in either winter or summertime!

The trail is much longer than stated and is not accurate to the map online. The trail is around 6 miles long due to modifications to the trail.

My favorite is early spring when falls are mostly still frozen to late spring with lots of wildflowers. muddy in spring past the falls but great for kids.

Fun, easy, good for kids and dogs. Beautiful views of Minnehaha Falls.

Cute, short, right on the river and near downtown Minneapolis. Can be pretty busy. Urban.

Well maintained trails , easy to get into trail running and hiking, good views and cover

The hiking club trail and waterfall trail were awesome! On the map online, it showed that you could get to a trail that went right along the Minnesota river. The online map is wrong. Use the maps at the park. We tried getting to the river trail and went almost 2 miles through mud, fallen trees, and wet ground before we gave up. It was a great adventure but not an easy one!

Good hike in well maintained trails. Mostly shaded. Can get buggy if trails are wet. The waterfall is the main attraction and can get very busy. Shallow enough so kids can play in the stream. I liked the hiking sections in the south part of the park. It’s actually across the road from the visitors center. I would come back in the spring for the wildflowers.

Great, well-marked trail. The waterfall is easy to access and great for wading and playing. Easy hiking, even for younger kids. There are a lot of dogs on the trail. We found a leech after playing in the water.

Decent trails, well-marked and maintained. Lots to choose from- you can really hike as little or as much as you want. Good for running. The main attraction seems to be the waterfall, the rest of the trails are standard forest hikes it seems.

It was a challenging but it’s worth it! The view of the Manitou River was beautiful.

I would rate moderate....but loved the hike and view

Parking is across road from trailhead. Entrance had gorgeous wildflowers in July. beginning of trail is easy and maintained with chipped wood. great views of the river. Further up trail is steep with views of the ravine and several falls. Some sections are moderate. We went as far as the bridge. leas than 1 mile. Connects to Superior trail. lots of fun.

backpacking park

Nice easy hike. Our small dog made the whole trip from the campground up to the 5th falls with no problem. Some steep spots that were muddy and slick. The trail by the upper falls gets very close to the edge in some areas, so it can get a little scary if you're not into heights. Definitely watch your kids if you go to the upper falls! Overall a great hike!

Good trail - steps in parts so don’t bring a stroller (or anything else you wouldn’t want to carry at times)

Great easy hike with multiple water falls, swimming holes, and paths through the woods.

hiking
1 month ago

Part of the paved trail near the river was flooded and a large tree was down over a bridge that made it impassable, but we were still able to take the trail to the hidden falls. Make sure to bring bug spray because the mosquitoes were large and plentiful. Would love to come back when things dry up a bit and really explore.

This is a fun place to go viewing with friends and family members. If you go on the trail below the falls, there is a nice trail with wooden walkways over the marshy parts. The trail is quite easy, but the rolling falls and the river is beautiful for the entire hike.

backpacking
1 month ago

I did a solo backpack loop in a clockwise direction over 3 days/2 nights (Saturday, 5/26 to Monday, 5/28). Unbelievably burly trail. I have hiked in many wild places in this country (lots of off-trail climbing and camping in the Rockies) and this is arguably the most challenging backpacking trip I have ever been on!

Day 1: The first 6 miles or so from the trail head to Devil's Cascade are well-traveled and easy to follow. All crossings over beaver dams were very easy to negotiate; the footing was firm and there was no doubt about the best way to navigate these crossings. They were some annoying downed logs/trees and wet trail crossings to deal with, but nothing too cumbersome. After a nice lunch at the spacious campground perched high above Devil's Cascade, I had some difficulty re-locating the trail (it veers off to the north just prior to the Pauness-Shell Portage Trail), and for the next stretch the trail was much more overgrown and harder to follow. At times, the path was very faint, but it was still relatively easy to follow. The amount of downfall increased substantially and travel was slow all the way to my first campsite on the rocky shores of Pageant Lake. I spent a lovely, calm evening there all to my lonesome. I was visited by pairs of commons loons and trumpeter swans while at the lake.

Day 2: This day just about broke me. Generally speaking, the trail from Pageant Lake to Shell Lake was plagued by downfall and countless wet, swampy, boggy areas. On this 12 mile stretch of trail, I counted nearly 100 trees that required some amount of effort to detour around, under, or over (this does not include the countless amount of smaller trees that obstructed the trail but were easy to step over). It was critical to pay attention to the narrow trail under your feet and to look for sawed logs (the only real "trail marker" that is identifiable with any regularity) to ensure I was on route! All of the beaver dam crossings were dry and very straightforward. One of the bogs was especially precarious to cross; I'm glad I didn't slip in because I fear I might still be wrestling to get my leg free from the muck! There were lots of ups and downs along the way, and many of the rocky rises had patches of pink lady's slipper on them! I passed 2 groups along the way (I presume they were to NurseMatt 116 and Beth Huplia, see their reviews below) and altogether this 12 mile stretch took me over 9.5 hours of trail time. Hot, humid, buggy conditions only made travel more challenging. I spent the second night at the canoeing site on Shell Lake (near the Shell-Little Shell portage). Very spacious site that could definitely host a large party.

Day 3: I hit the trail at 7am and hiked more-or-less straight out along the shore of Shell Lake to the main trail junction south of Devil's Cascade. From there, it was an easy hike back out to the trail head. It took about 4.5 hours for me to cover the last 8 miles or so.

Altogether, this trail is extremely rugged and not for the faint of heart. If you are looking for solitude with a multitude of camping options, look no further. I would not recommend this trail to a beginning backpacker, as the lack of signs, ample amount of downfall, and remoteness of the loop make this more appropriate for experienced backpackers only. Kudos to whatever amazing people conduct infrequent maintenance on this trail... when you see some of the huge sawed logs and take into consideration how far they are from a motor vehicle, it's virtually unthinkable to imagine the effort it takes to clear this route!

hiking
1 month ago

Trail was very muddy but was expected because of saturation levels. Nothing that really jumped out as amazing on this loop other than mosquitoes bigger than dogs haha. I wouldnt recommend this loop as long as mosquitoes are active to be honest.

Great Trail! Recommend to ware decent shoes as some area's are a bit ruff due to rain.

hiking
1 month ago

Wonderful trail with many amazing ohhh-ahhh moments along the way.

Love it! Beautiful!

Trail in good shape! River down so can soak feet. Few bugs.

Lovely trail. It took me about 4.5 hours for a leisurely hike. The Trout Creek bridge is out, but today (June 26, 2018) the creek was dry, so I could walk right across. If it has rained, check http://www.superiorhiking.org for conditions before you go. Edit: after hiking some trails in the Rockies, I’d rate this one as moderate or even easy.

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