Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Sunday Ride - Depot Coffee House to Victoria Loop

Depot Coffee House to Victoria
Lunch in Victoria
Return by Southern Loop

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Bike Ride - Scandia North

This ride starts in Scandia, it's about 60 miles:

It's supposed to be a loop, but I ran into Google's landmark limit so you have to imagine the last few miles back to Scandia.


I'm probably going to tweak this one a bit more.

Sunday Ride - modified version of "Jerry's Ride"

This is a shorter ride of 30 miles to the northeast of MSP:

Google short version: https://goo.gl/maps/AGyTNk5rNNLcZCnP6
It's based on Jerry's Ride from Richard Arey's "Twin Cities Bicycling" 2003. The book isn't in print now and I don't believe there's a later edition.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Sunday Ride - Minneapolis South to North and Northeast

May 26 Ride is a variant of the May 12 ride (Below). It’s about 38 miles in total and it starts and ends at the Midtown Greenway eastern terminus (can park there or ride to there).

Midtown Greenway (start) to Victory Flagpole - 13 miles

Victory Flagpole North MPLS & Shingle Creek Loop - 14 miles

Tour of Northeast MPLS - 11 miles (to midtown greenway)

This ride is built on the ride below and incorporates parts of them with some new parts in NE MPLS. It’s mostly on trails but there are some (we hope) bike friendly streets as well.

— Original ride

This is a Friends ride Sunday post, but it turned out Sunday May 12 is Mother's Day. My spouse is working and my mother has transcended, so I'll be doing it solo. I'm stopping at Angry Catfish for coffee and to return a defective Otto Lock (are there any other kind?) then North to Coon Rapids. On the way back I'll stop in Northeast MPLS for a late lunch at the Anchor, then head home. Most of this route is on bike trails.

Update 5/12/2019: The ride from Angry Catfish across south Minneapolis then up to Victory Park is really extraordinary. I spent so much time sightseeing and having coffee and pastry at Angry Catfish that I ran out of time to go to Coon Rapids. Instead I had to cut across to Northtown ...
I really enjoyed Shingle Creek and Webber Park. Visiting 13 Ave NE meant I finally understood the state of NE Minneapolis. Sheridan Veterans memorial.... Betty Danger's Country Club ... Northtown, Columbia Park ...
Next Time I'd like to make a loop of the trails north of where I crossed the river. So same way I went, but then something like this:
That would be a fun loop. Incidentally, if I had some idle millions lying about I'd invest in real estate out there. For better or worse it's going to go upscale.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

MNTrails.org lists some classic nordic ski trails I'd like to try

I most like single track classic only trails in the woods. Recently I came across the mntrails.com listing — it had a few that I’d like to check out.

From their listing I picked out a few to visit, mostly classic or more scenic than average. See original page for links.

  • Afton  Afton State Park 19km 
    • A variety of groomed, classic loops with trail shelters overlooking the St.Croix River near Afton Alps Ski Resort. Heated Visitors center has parking and bathrooms. The park also has snowshoe trails and holds an annual candlelight ski. MN ski pass required.
  • Burnsville  Terrace Oaks Park 10.9km 
    • Beginner to expert. Groomed, classic ski trails along lakes and ponds through hills and woods. Chalet available.
  • Eagan  Lebanon Hills Regional Park 20km 
    • Beginner to advanced trails, groomed for classic and skate ski. Trails wind through the hilly, wooded countryside and around scenic lakes and ponds. Dakota County ski pass required.
  • Hastings  St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park 10.5km  
    • Beginner to intermediate, groomed, classic ski trails on the wild and scenic St. Croix River. 1.8km skate loop. MN ski pass required.
  • Maple Grove Elm Creek Park Reserve 18km 
    • Beginner to advanced, groomed, classic and skate trails. Some of the best ski trails in the metro area with fantastic night skiing on lighted trails and a 2.5 km loop with man-made snow. Elm Creek Chalet offers ski rentals, snack bar, and woodstove. Three Rivers Park District ski pass required.
  • Maplewood  Battle Creek Regional Park - West 13km 
    • Beginner to advanced, classic and skate ski trail. 4 km lit trail. MN ski pass required.
  • Marine on St. Croix  William O'Brien State Park 19km 
    • Multi-trail system, for all skill levels of classic and skate skiers with views of St. Croix River. Wetland Trail for beginners and Prairie Overlook for the more advanced. Heated trail center has a wood stove. Annual candlelight ski. MN ski pass required.
  • Saint Paul  Fort Snelling State Park 19km 
    • The park offers flat, classical trails. Most popular trail is the Pike Island Loop. It offers views of the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. Visitor center open daily 8 am to 4 pm. MN ski pass required.
  • Savage  Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve 15km 
    • Some of the most exciting and challenging trails in the metro. Groomed, classic and skate trails. Snacks, rentals and wax available at trail head building. Three Rivers Park District ski pass required.
  • Stillwater Brown's Creek Nature Preserve 4.5km 
    • Beginner classic trails on moderate hills. MN ski pass required.
  • Stillwater  Pine Point Regional Park 7km 
    • Beginner to intermediate trails groomed for classic ski only. This small park near the end of the Gateway Trail has beautiful scenery with trails winding through large pine plantation, by small lakes and picturesque farms. MN ski pass required.
  • Vadnais Heights  Vadnais/Sucker Lakes 7.3km 
    • Beginner to advanced, classic-only trail on moderate hills through woods. MN ski pass required.
  • Victoria  Carver Park Reserve 18km 
    • Beginner to intermediate, groomed, classic and skate trails through hardwood forests and marshlands. Lowry Nature Center offers a warming place and has ski rentals on weekends. Three Rivers Park District ski pass required.
  • White Bear Lake  Tamarack Nature Center 8km 
    • Beginner to intermediate, classic-only trails through prairie, woodland, and marsh. Ski rentals available. 1 km practice loop. MN ski pass required.

Good snow is rare these days, but Feb 2019 is different.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Bunker Hills (Anoka County) has a skijoring trail

My skijor girl is too elderly and arthritic for this season, but I was happy to learn that Bunker Hills Regional Park has a skijoring trail: “Over 8 kilometers of groomed trail meanders through the oaks, pines and prairie in the western portion of the park”. They have rental skis too.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

The St Paul Traverse road and mountain bike trail

Duluth has the amazing Duluth Traverse trail that ties together several mountain bike trails. Even that trail has some road connectors though. It occurred to me that there’s a natural St Paul “Traverse” trail that connects anything along the river with Battle Creek and Carver. It’s most paved bike trails or single track with a bit of quiet road.
Here’s the overview and the Carver MTB component:
BC to Carver
Here’s the section from the NE end of Battle Creek (technically NE end is not in park, it's Scenic Overlook)

The area circled in red is where I’d prefer to jump out of BC onto the paved trail. This is at the base of Goat Trail (not a beginner trail!), from the satellite map close up it looks like one could descend a grassy area to the paved trails (see footnote [1]). The map below is from mtbproject (REI).


This would be a solid day of road/single track riding for most of us!

Update 6/9/2019  - more detailed version for a Sunday Ride

Depending on our timing a few segments can be dropped. There aren't a lot of places to stop and eat until the end of the trail. This ended up being a bit over 30 miles but it felt like 50-60 riding my mountain bike, doing the trails, and a surprising amount of up and down.

Segment 1: Groveland Tap to Overlook 8 miles

Segment 2: Batttle Creek Overlook to exit point (mtbproject)
The red line is the path overlaid on the mtbproject map. I think this is probably about 5 miles. The exit, is as above, not official. Will be bushwhacking (see footnote [1]).

This is St Paul East Side. The "Boys Totem Town" is a 100yo correctional facility for youth. It is to close in July 2019. (When we rode this in Strava you can see where we took a wrong turn or two.)

Segment 4: From start of Battle Creek back to the trails
The lower right quadrant here are trails we ski in Winter. This segment also appeared in an earlier post. The top right quadrant is Battle Creek Water Park, there can be ice cream trucks there and there are bathrooms. From here you can see wetlands Battle Creek runs through, but it starts in Battle Creek Lake in Woodbury (I think it is underground until it emerges near the water park).

When we actually rode this (Strava, below) we missed turning left on Upper Afton Road so instead of taking Battle Creek Road to the trails we followed Creek back to Luge Connector. (Battle Creek goes underground again at the end of the park to pass beneath rail and freeway.)

Segment 5: From S Battle Creek Road pick up the trail to Bowl and Luge to Overlook

8.3miles, 55 minutes. There are many eating options here at the end.

And here's how it looked on Strava with a few false turns, about 30 miles (felt longer):

- fn- 
[1] We were able to transition from the segment of Goat to the paved bike path -- but it's not easy. There's only one place to transition and it's fairly steep. We were able to walk it down using the bike partly as an aide -- but only because invasive vegetation had been cleared and it was opened up a bit.