Bike Touring (Paved Trail)
Bike Touring includes traveling the area on paved trails maintained and developed primarily for bikes. These are long distance trails that pass through the Superior National Forest, but also leave the Forest and are developed and maintained by groups outside of the US Forest Service.
There are two large paved bike trails that pass through the Superior National Forest. One is the Mesabi Trail, passing through the towns of Ely and Aurora, and the other is the Gitchi Gami Trail, passing through the towns of Tofte and Grand Marais.
The Mesabi Trail was established by the Regional Railroad Authority and was built mostly on former railroad right of way. It tours the forests and towns of Minnesota's iron mining area, known as the Iron Range. It is being built in sections which may not connect with each other. For more information, including maps of current and future construction, visit the the Mesabi Trail's website. (Note, this link will take you off the Forest Service website.)
The Gitchi Gami Trail runs along the shore of Lake Superior from Two Harbors to Grand Marais. It is not on railroad right of way, and is being constructed during reconstruction of MN Hwy 61 as a state trail. It often parallels the road, but also frequently veers away from the road to explore parks and scenery. It is always separated from Hwy 61, though occasionally is connected to smaller roadways. It too is being built in sections. For further information, including maps, about the Gitchi Gami Trail, visit the Gitchi Gami Trail Association's website. (Note, this link will take you off the Forest Service website.)