The Mesabi Trail: A New Trail Continues to Grow

May 09 , 2012
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The Mesabi TrailSM is one of Minnesota’s newest and longest bicycle trails and traverses fields, streams, lakes and forests along its path from Grand Rapids to Ely.

Travel the Mississippi to the edge of the BWCA wilderness. The 10-12 foot wide bituminous surface is non-motorized and requires a wheel pass for persons age 18 years and older using a bicycle, inline skates or other non-motorized device. For more information contact or visit the website,

Located in northern Minnesota between the cities of Ely and Grand Rapids, the Mesabi Trail is a premier Minnesota bike trail winding through some of the state’s prettiest regions.

When completed, the trail will traverse 132 miles and connect more than 25 communities. A superior paved bike trail that is well-mapped and well-maintained, the Mesabi Trail also makes an interesting walking path. In 2011, approximately 115 miles of trail were completed and offer convenient accessibility at numerous entry points. The longest paved section connects Grand Rapids to McKinley (approximately 75 miles) through the communities of Grand Rapids, Nashwauk, Keewatin, Hibbing, Chisholm, Mountain Iron and Virginia, to name several. Once completed, the Mesabi Trail will be one of the longest paved trails in the United States.

Many campgrounds and local parks are easily accessible from the trail, highways, and nearby communities. Food, lodging, shopping, antiquing, golfing, fishing, camping and swimming are all in close proximity to segments of the trail, with communities and services available near all entry points.

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  1. Regarding the Mesabi Trail: will the segment from Giants Ridge to Ely be finished in my lifetime or before I am confined to a tricycle? (I am presently 66). The progress on this segment seems to have stalled at Giants Ridge & is not making progress towards Ely.John Krebsbach