Horseback Riding on the Iron Range

Horseback riding on the Iron Range is arguably the best way to experience the natural scenic beauty that can be found along the many miles of horseback riding trails that cut through the range. After all, what could be better than breathing in the crisp fall air while riding a leafy path strewn with autumn colors through one of Minnesota’s well preserved state parks?

Trails such as the Iron Range’s Taconite Trail and the Arrowhead State Trail are sure to give you this type of peacefully memorable experience.

Horse Pass

In order to ride on any of the Minnesota state trails that are approved for horseback riding, any person age 16 and older will be required to hold a horse pass that is issued through the Minnesota State DNR. Annual passes are $21 dollars and are valid for one year. Daily passes are also available for $5 and are only valid for the day shown.

Mesabi Trail

The Mesabi Trail, though best known and most widely used as an extensive and scenic bicycling trail, allows horseback riding and camping in parts of its 120 miles. Just as the Mesabi Trail offers an exciting experience for bicycling it can provide you with a memorable horseback riding experience. Check out the official Mesabi Trail site here for more information.

Taconite Trail

The Taconite Trail extends 145 miles from Ely to Grand Rapids. It passes through two state parks, McCarthy Beach and Bear Head Lake, as well as George Washington, Bear Island and Sturgeon River state forests. All of which are approved for horseback riding.

The Taconite trail is easily the largest state trail on the Iron Range that is approved for horseback riding and with its numerous access points, many of which are large enough to park a horse trailer, you will have no problems getting out there and enjoying the natural scenery of the Minnesota State Parks and Forests.

Equestrian Campgrounds

George Washington State forest boasts two horse friendly campgrounds, Stoneybrook camp and the nearby Togo campground. Both campgrounds provide pull-through campsites, picket lines, manure bunkers, an accessible loading ramp and open spaces. Equestrian campsites have a fee of $16 per night.

Arrowhead State Trail

Taconite Trail may be the largest and most widely utilized equestrian trail in the area but it is certainly not the only trail.

The Arrowhead State Trail extends off the Taconite Trail at an intersection near Tower and extends to three miles south of International Falls. Approximately 69 out of the 135 mile trail is ideal for horseback riding. Here you will ride by lakes, streams and rolling hills that are heavily laden with a wide assortment of tree species.