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MN/WI Border to Duluth

  • 50.2 Miles of Trail
  • 14 Sections of Trail
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Minnesota-Wisconsin Border to Wild Valley Road Trailhead

Directions

Wild Valley Road Trailhead: From I-35, take Carlton Exit #235 and go east on Hwy. 210 for 2.4 miles to Carlton. Turn right (south) on Carlton Co. Rd. 1 and go 4.5 miles into Wrenshall, turn left (east) on Carlton Co. Rd. 18 and go 3.1 miles, turn left (north) on Hwy. 23 and go 0.3 miles. Turn right (south) on Wild Valley Rd. and go 0.5 miles to trailhead parking lot on left. Note that this is a seasonal parking lot – see below for more information. Overnight parking okay.

Description
  • The SHT begins at the remote Minnesota-Wisconsin border, the southern terminus of the SHT. To reach the terminus on the SHT, it’s an out-and-back hike from Wild Valley Road Trailhead.
  • From the SHT’s southern terminus, the North Country National Scenic Trail continues into Wisconsin. You can find maps and more information by visiting northcountrytrail.org.
  • Wild Valley Road (“Mountain Goat Road” on state forest land) Trailhead parking lot is closed seasonally from mid-March to late May and is not plowed in winter.
  • Features nice maple forests dotted with large white pine, and beautiful Red River Bridge.

Wild Valley Road Trailhead to Jay Cooke State Park Visitor Center

Directions

Wild Valley Road Trailhead: From I-35, take Carlton Exit #235 and go east on Hwy. 210 for 2.4 miles to Carlton. Turn right (south) on Carlton Co. Rd. 1 and go 4.5 miles into Wrenshall, turn left (east) on Carlton Co. Rd. 18 and go 3.1 miles, turn left (north) on Hwy. 23 and go 0.3 miles. Turn right (south) on Wild Valley Rd. and go 0.5 miles to trailhead parking lot on left. Overnight parking okay.

Description
  • Remote and rugged section of Jay Cooke State Park with steep climbs and seasonal views.
  • Begins as SHT-only, then joins state park trails to the Jay Cooke State Park Visitor Center.
  • No SHT campsites, but four state park backcountry fee campsites (Lost Lake, Ash Ridge, High Landing, and Silver Creek) in the area, must be reserved and paid for in advance! DO NOT CAMP HERE WITHOUT A PAID RESERVATION.
  • Wild Valley Road (“Mountain Goat Road” on state forest land) Trailhead parking lot is closed seasonally from mid-March to late May and is not plowed in winter.

Jay Cooke State Park Visitor Center to Grand Portage Trailhead

Directions

Jay Cooke State Park Visitor Center Trailhead: From I-35, take the Carlton Exit #235 and go right (east) on Hwy. 210 for 5.5 miles to Jay Cooke State Park Visitor Center. State park sticker required for day use parking. Overnight parking okay with state park sticker; check-in with state park staff.

Description
  • SHT shares state park trails through a variety of habitats.
  • Highlights include views of the St. Louis River, groves of white pine, and the deep Gill Creek Valley.
  • Trail follows historic Grand Portage route.

Grand Portage Trailhead to 131st Avenue W. (Fond du Lac) Trailhead

Directions

From the South: From I-35, take the Carlton Exit #235 and go east on Hwy. 210 9.4 miles to Grand Portage Trail parking lot.

From the North: From Hwy. 23- Hwy. 210 intersection, turn onto Hwy. 210 and go 2.4 miles to Grand Portage Trail parking lot on left. State Park sticker required to park in lot. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Trail travels through hardwood forests with occasional pockets of large white pine trees with steep climbs onto ridges and steep descents into river valleys
  • Historic stone bridge over Mission Creek.

131st Avenue W. (Fond du Lac) Trailhead to 123rd Avenue W. (Becks Road) Trailhead

Directions

From the South: on I-35, take Midway Rd. Exit #246. Go south 4.5 miles on Midway Rd./Beck’s Rd. to Grand Ave./Commonwealth Ave./Hwy. 23. Turn right (south) and follow Hwy. 23 for 3.8 miles to 131st Ave. W. on right. Turn right on 131st Ave. W. and go 0.4 miles passing gate into trailhead parking lot by kiosk.

From the North: Take Hwy. 23/Grand Ave. Exit #251B and drive 8.7 miles to Fond du Lac. Turn right on 131st Ave. W. and go 0.4 miles passing gate into trailhead parking lot by kiosk. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Climbs out of Mission Creek Valley.
  • Continues on high bluff with occasional views of the St. Louis Bay of Lake Superior.
  • Descends into Sargent Creek valley with several pockets of old growth white pine trees.

123rd Avenue W. (Becks Road) to Magney Snively Trailhead

Directions

From the South:  From I-35, take Midway Rd. Exit #246. Go south on Midway Rd./Becks Rd. 2.7 miles. Turn left on 123rd Avenue W. and follow road to parking lot on left.

From the North: On Grand Ave. in Duluth, go south to Becks Rd. Turn right on Becks Rd, go 1.8 miles to 123rd Avenue W., turn right and follow road to parking lot. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Begins on paved Munger Trail for 0.4 miles.
  • Climbs to Ely’s Peak and Bardon’s Peak with magnificent views.
  • Heads through the Magney-Snively Natural Area old growth forest.

Magney Snively Trailhead to Spirit Mountain Grand Avenue Chalet Trailhead

Directions

Magney Snively Trailhead: From I-35, take Boundary Ave. Exit #249. Go south on Boundary Ave. past gas station, McDonalds, to T-stop. Turn left on Skyline Pkwy. (follow Spirit Mountain signs). Pass turnoff to Spirit Mountain main chalet and continue another 1.5 miles on Skyline Pkwy. to parking lot on left. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Begins in beautiful forests at Magney-Snively Natural Area.
  • Goes through Spirit Mountain Recreation Area.
  • Almost a mile along cascading Knowlton Creek.

Spirit Mountain Grand Avenue Chalet Trailhead to Waseca Street Trailhead

Directions

Grand Avenue Chalet Trailhead: : 8551 Grand Ave., Duluth. From the south, take I-35 to Cody St. Exit #251A and continue on Cody St. for 0.3 miles. Turn right on N. 63rd Ave. W. and go 0.6 miles. Turn right on Grand Ave. and go 1.8 miles to chalet parking lot on right.

Alternate Parking Option:  Spirit Mountain Parking Lot D Trailhead: From I-35, take Boundary Ave. Exit #249. Go south on Boundary Ave. past gas station, McDonalds, to T-stop. Turn left on Skyline Pkwy. (follow Spirit Mountain signs). Follow Skyline Parkway to Parking Lot D, on left. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Begins in beautiful forests at Magney-Snively Natural Area.
  • Goes through Spirit Mountain Recreation Area.
  • Almost a mile along cascading Knowlton Creek.

Waseca Street Trailhead to Skyline Parkway Trailhead

Directions

Waseca Street Trailhead: From the south: take I-35 Cody St. Exit #251A and continue on Cody St. for 0.3 miles. Turn right on N. 63rd Ave. W. and go 0.6 miles. Turn right on Grand Ave. and go 0.7 miles. Turn right on Waseca St. (between 69th Ave. W. and 72nd Ave. W.) and go 0.2 miles to end of street to trailhead parking lot.

From the North: Take I-35 Grand Ave./Hwy. 23 Exit #251B and go right 0.8 miles on Grand Ave. to Waseca St. Turn right on Waseca St. and go 0.2 miles to end of street to trailhead parking lot. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Climbs along scenic Kingsbury Creek.
  • Crosses several small cascading creeks.
  • Section ends with over half a mile climb along scenic Keene Creek.

Skyline Parkway Trailhead to N. 24th Avenue W. Trailhead

Directions

Skyline Trailhead Parkway: From the south, take I-35 Boundary Ave. Exit #249. Turn left, cross bridge, then take right onto Skyline Pkwy. Drive 2.4 miles past intersection with Highland St. to parking lot on right.

From the North: take I-35 Central Ave. Exit #252. Turn right and go 0.8 miles uphill on Central Ave. Turn left on Highland St. and go 1.1 miles to intersection of Skyline Pkwy. Turn right on Skyline Pkwy. to parking lot on right. No overnight parking.

Alternate Parking Option: On I-35, take 40th Ave. W. (Haines Rd.) Exit #253B, go north (uphill) 1.7 miles to Haines Road Trailhead on right. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Follows Keene Creek before heading up to scenic vistas of St. Louis River Bay and the Aerial Bridge.
  • Includes the Brewer Park Loop for an enjoyable out-and-back trip.

N. 24th Ave W. Trailhead to Twin Ponds Trailhead

Directions

N. 24th Avenue W. Trailhead: From I-35, take Piedmont Ave./Hwy. 53 Exit #255A uphill 1.5 miles, turn left at stoplight onto Piedmont Ave., take first left onto N. 24th Ave. W., cross Skyline Pkwy., and take left into parking lot. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Trail goes through Forgotten Park, crosses Coffee Creek and goes through pine forest in remote part of Enger Park.
  • Spur trail to Enger Tower with stunning views.
  • Features short hike through gardens, past historic bell, with nice views.

Twin Ponds Trailhead to Rose Garden Trailhead

Directions

Twin Ponds Trailhead: From I-35, take Piedmont Ave./Hwy. 53 Exit #255A uphill 1.5 miles, turn left at stoplight onto Piedmont Ave., take first left onto N. 24th Ave. W., turn left onto Skyline Pkwy. and go 1.5 miles to Twin Ponds Trailhead parking lot. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Descends through Central Park and Point of Rocks Park.
  • Follows paved trails and sidewalks by Bayfront Park, Canal Park, and Duluth Lakewalk.
  • Beautiful views of Lake Superior.

Rose Garden Trailhead to Hartley Nature Center Trailhead

Directions

Rose Garden Trailhead: Rose Garden parking lot is at intersection of London Rd. and S. 14th Ave. E. From I-35, take 21st Ave. E. Exit #258, turn left at stop sign and go 200 feet to London Rd. Turn left on London Rd. at traffic signal and go 7 blocks to parking lot on left. Rose Garden parking lot is posted for 3-hour parking only so if planning a longer hike, there is plenty of free parking along London Rd. No overnight parking.

Description
  • Climbs on sidewalks to Chester Creek Trail for 0.4 miles.
  • After another roadwalk, SHT shares Bagley Nature Center trails at University of Minnesota – Duluth.
  • Traverses rugged Hartley Park forests and ridges.

Hartley Nature Center Trailhead to Martin Road Trailhead

Directions

Hartley Nature Center Trailhead: From I-35, take 21st Ave. East Exit #258. Turn left on 21st Ave. E. and go 0.7 miles up hill. Turn right on Woodland Ave. and go 2.6 miles. Turn left on Hartley Nature Center driveway and go to parking lot. No overnight parking.

Martin Road Trailhead: From I-35, take 21st Ave. East Exit #258. Turn left on 21st Ave. E. and go 0.7 miles up hill. Turn right on Woodland Ave. and go 1.2 miles. Turn right on Snively Rd. and go 1.0 miles to intersection with Jean Duluth Rd. Continue straight on Jean Duluth Rd. and go 1.9 miles. Turn left on Martin Rd. and go 1.2 miles to trailhead parking lot on left. Overnight parking okay.

Description
  • 1.7 mile roadwalk along Vermillion Road to Downer Park.
  • Trail travels high above Amity Creek.
  • Long boardwalks through ash tree forest.