Trek the North Country Trail

By Explore Minnesota

North Country Trail signThe North Country National Scenic Trail traverses seven states, from New York to North Dakota. A work by dedicated volunteers, the trail is still undeveloped in some areas along the route, but long segments of the pathway have been complete or incorporate existing hiking trails. In northeast Minnesota, for instance, the Superior Hiking Trail and Superior Forest trails along the border and leading to Ely are all part of the North Country route.

In the north central part of the state, more than 150 miles of North Country hiking trail have been completed between Remer and the Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge, north of Detroit Lakes. It passes through the Chippewa National Forest and the Paul Bunyan and White Earth state forests, and skirts the southern edge of Itasca State Park. Several local chapters develop, maintain and promote their segments of the trail.

The Laurentian Lakes Chapter manages the western Minnesota end between Itasca and Tamarac. Their website includes a trail map, a list of trailheads with parking, and several suggested hikes ranging from 3 to 21 miles roundtrip. In addition, they offer monthly guided hikes on different parts of the North Country Trail.