Author Topic: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota  (Read 1771 times)

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Offline dminden1

Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« on: February 02, 2013, 12:25:32 pm »
Hi
I'm looking for information about cycle camping in Northern Minnesota, considering the Duluth-Grand Marais - Ely - Bemidji- Grand Rapids - Brainerd area. The usual info would be welcomed - route, condition of paved roads, traffic flow, stores, sights not to miss,etc.
Thanks
Dave from Madison, WI

Offline DaveB

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 07:48:15 pm »
Have you contacted the Minnesota Department of Tourism?  Many states have bicycle specific maps and information. 

Offline John Nelson

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 09:18:45 pm »
Bemidji to Grand Rapids to Aitkin is covered by the ACA Northern Tier route, which gives a lot of the information you want.

Offline dombrosk

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2013, 06:47:49 am »
You might want to include the Mesabi Trail as part of your route.  I've ridden it twice as part of the MS-TRAM fundraising ride and it covers some nice countryside and interesting history.
http://www.mesabitrail.com/

Offline JMilyko

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2013, 09:05:07 am »
Have you contacted the Minnesota Department of Tourism?  Many states have bicycle specific maps and information.

Minnesota DOT has a whole page of bicycling related maps:

http://www.dot.state.mn.us/bike/maps.html

Hope this helps,
.Jennifer.
*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*_*

Jennifer H. Milyko
Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring and empowering people to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x205
www.adventurecycling.org

Follow Routes & Mapping on Twitter: @acaroutes

Offline litespeed

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2013, 01:39:37 pm »
Minnesota and Wisconsin are fine bicycling states. Good shoulders on the roads, plenty of trails and campgrounds, lots of state and municipal parks with camping spots, lots of services and a bike-friendly populace. Also, the state parks have a policy of always finding a spot for bicycle tourists, even when full.

My only quibble is that there are often frost cracks on the highway shoulders every ten feet or so but this is hardly a major problem.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2013, 02:26:16 pm »
My only quibble is that there are often frost cracks on the highway shoulders every ten feet or so but this is hardly a major problem.

When we crossed into MN from ND we hit them almost immediately. Kathunk, kathunk kathunk every few seconds, but it wasn't nearly that bad most places.

OP: Grand Rapids is the home town of Judy Garland. Saw a bear cub in Malmo. Bemidji has its own gaint Paul Bunyon and Babe statues. My biggest annoyance were the skeeters. A coulple of afternoons I set up my tent find blood spots on the hite parts from skeeters that had gotten in that morning and been squashed when the tent was rolled up.

Offline bikenorth

Re: Self Contained Touring in Northern Minnesota
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2013, 09:03:45 pm »
I live in Duluth and the route from Duluth to Grand Marais is decent. Beautiful of course because the whole ride is along the shore of lake superior. Plenty of good camping with many state parks and plenty of options for wild camping. The road is good for most of the way with wide enough shoulders and  some of it is covered by the gitchi gami trail which is very nice.  Some of Hwy 61 has narrow to non existent shoulders but overall it s good.

The mesabi trail is awesome. Lots of options on the areas you are looking at.

Let me know if you need more information.

If you are into beer, Duluth has many microbreweries. Very good stuff.

Mike