Travel from the Mississippi River to the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Bicycle or hike through the Superior National Forest and over the Laurentian Continental Divide. Imagine a day of sunshine and a path to explore nature and the 28 communities nestled along the way.
The Mesabi Trail is one of Minnesota’s longest paved bicycle trails. It traverses fields, streams, lakes and forests along its path from Grand Rapids, across the Mesabi Iron Range, to Ely. Our name comes from the Ojibwa Native Americans who made their home along many parts of the Trail. Our fame comes from what your adventure may reveal.
During your adventure, explore turn of the century logging at the Forest History Center in Grand Rapids, view the “Grand Canyon of the North” – the world’s largest open pit mine in Hibbing, land as an immigrant to find your fortune at Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm, cycle across the tallest bridge in Minnesota in Virginia, traverse a bog via a 3/4 mile long floating bridge in Embarrass, ride over 2,000 feet down a mine shaft to your work station at the Soudan Underground Mine State Park, or share our common bonds with the natural world at the Ely International Wolf Center.
Explore where the continent finds its divide – from here water flows north to Hudson Bay, South to the Gulf of Mexico, and East to the Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy a solitary patch of wild blueberries or strawberries as you rest along a refreshing brook. It is an enchanting place full of immigrant history, Native American legend, and the beauty of hearty forests, hundreds of lakes and rivers, and the scenic majesty of water filled iron mines.
Bike and enjoy the beauty of the Mesabi Trail; a non-motorized,10-12 foot wide bituminous surface. Currently over 135 miles of trail are complete, when finished in 3-5 years the trail will traverse over 155 miles. A wheel pass is required for anyone older than 18 riding on wheels such as a bicycle or skates, the cost is $15 for a year or $5 for three days. You can buy your wheel pass from a community vendor, self pay boxes at entry points, or at mesabitrail.com.
If you would like to experience a fully supported adventure on the Mesabi Trail, join us the 1st Saturday in August for the Great River Energy Mesabi Trail Tour – the most fun you can have on two wheels! Choose from four different routes ranging from 10 – 70 miles, entry includes transportation for you and your bike, a tour t-shirt, food & entertainment along the way and at the finish line.
Explore recommended itineraries and make plans to visit soon!