Winter Biking: Plowed Trails in the Twin Cities

By Verónica Jaralambides

Plowed-Bike-Trail-Minnesota-article-image.jpgIt’s no secret that fat bikes are all the rage this winter. If you don’t own one, but still want to venture out on your bike without worrying about traffic, read on to find out about plowed trails in the Twin Cities.

Below is a list of trails maintained for winter biking in the Twin Cities. This is just a start–add your voice to the mix by telling us about your favorite plowed biking trails, and let’s make this a state-wide list (email: ipedalmn@gmail.com).

Midtown Greenway:
The 5.5-mile former railroad corridor was named the best bike path in America in 2013 for good reason. The city of Minneapolis does a great job keeping the Greenway cleared of snow all winter long–often plowing within hours of snowfall. More info here.

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Luce Line Regional Trail:
Almost nine miles of biking trails from Minneapolis into the NW suburbs of Golden Valley and Plymouth, though between Theo Worth Parkway and Golden Valley Country Club has not been plowed.  More info here.

North Cedar Lake and Cedar Lake Regional Trails:
Both Cedar Lake Trails offer big-time connectivity, connecting cyclists to other trails (including the Greenway and Luce Line) that weave through the Western half of the Twin Cities. More info on North Cedar Lake Trail here. More info on Cedar Lake LRT Regional Trail here.

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Minnesota River Bluffs LRT Regional Trail:
An 13-mile aggregate trail that runs from Hopkins through Chanhassen. More info here.

Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail:
This trail goes from the city of Hopkins to Victoria, with beautiful views of Lake Minnetonka. Make sure you stop at the French Pastry shop in Excelsior, right off the trail, and take some time to visit Carver County Regional Park. More info here.

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Gateway State Trail:
A portion of this trail, from Cayuga (trail head by 35E) to Jamaca Ave is regularly plowed. That’s a total of 12.6 miles of paved trail to ride on! Find updates on the DNR site about trail conditions here.

West & East Mississippi River Parkways:
With over a dozen combined miles of bike and walking paths, these paths are favorites in the Twin Cities year-round, thanks to regular snow removal. West River Parkway info here.

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Hyland Lake Park:
Most of the multi-use trails are plowed throughout the winter. There are about seven miles of cleared trails, including a loop that will keep you close to the parking area if you’re testing your winter gear.

Additional Plowed Trails:

Medicine Lake Regional Trail in Plymouth and Maple Grove

Rush Creek Regional Trail in Brooklyn Park

Shingle Creek Regional Trail in Brooklyn Center

Twin Lakes Regional Trail in Brooklyn Center

Having these trails plowed makes it that much easier to get out on two wheels during the winter months. Tom Knisely of Three Rivers Parks District, says, “The bottom line is we’re in the middle of a classic Minnesota winter, and you can sit inside and be a humbug or you can get outside and embrace winter.” Avoid cabin fever and get out and ride!

*Photos courtesy of Aaron Thomas Smith, Verónica Jaralambides and Low Kling