Scenic Driving

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Fall on the Forest
The Chippewa National Forest puts on a dramatic show of fall color when the weather begins to cool. The fall season is a favorite for visitors who want to take in the gold tamaracks, red maples, campfires, and cool breezes of the season. The Chippewa National Forest offers miles of scenic byways to travel, as well as colorful trails. After a busy summer, many visitors seek out a quiet drive through the colorful autumn forest.

Favorite Scenic Drives                                                                           

Paved Scenic Drives:

Edge of the Wilderness National Scenic Byway: 47 miles | Grand Rapids to Bigfork, Minn.

  • Self-guided interpretive tour along the way, watch for green Discovery Site markers.

Ladyslipper Scenic Byway (Map): 26 miles | Hwy 2 to Blackduck, Minn.

  • Very popular in early summer when the Showy Ladyslippers bloom, this is also a wonderful autumn drive. The byway takes you past Knutson Dam, Webster Lake and Camp Rabideau.

Lake Country Scenic Byway: 67 miles | Walker to Detroit Lakes, Minn.

  • A short section within the National Forest, stop and enjoy the view at Shingobee Hills.  

Avenue of the Pines State Scenic Byway: 17 miles | Lake Winnie to S. Lake, Minn.

  • From the junction of County Road 9 (the Winnie Dam road) and County Road 46, travel north on 46 along the Avenue of the Pines past Cut Foot Sioux Recreation Area and north to S. Lake.

Backcountry and Unpaved Scenic Drives:

Woodtick Trail : 13 miles  | Longville to Hackensack, Minn.

  • The Trail is actually a maintained gravel road that runs along the southern border of the Forest. Great wildlife viewing. Bring a Motor Vehicle Use map to track the smaller roads off the Woodtick.

County 8 and Tamarack Point: 12 miles | Bena to Winnie Dam, Minn.

  • Take County Road 8 off either Highway 46 or Highway 2 near Bena, MN. Travel Co 9 (also known as the Winnie Dam Road) to Tamarack Point off State 46.                          

County Road 50: 8 miles | Walker to Hackensack, Minn.

  • A short winding drive through mixed hardwood forest and along the Shingobee River. Starts just south of Walker and ends north of Hackensack near the Woodtick Trail.

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities