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Level: Intermediate
Length: 25 mi (40.2 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +1,583/ -1,632 ft
Total: 283 riders

Mountain Biking Cuyuna Lakes

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#1 of 136 mountain bike trails in Minnesota
#17 in the world

25 miles of network trails that range from easy to extreme difficult. This is a new trail system just opening this year. Many routes to choose from when riding.

First added by trnelson on Jun 3, 2011. Last updated Apr 8, 2021. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: yes
  • Lift service: no
  • Night riding: yes
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: yes
  • Fat bike grooming: yes
  • E-bikes allowed: yes
  • Fee required: yes
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
From Minneapolis MN- 1. Head northwest on S Washington Ave toward 3rd Ave S 0.3 mi 2. Turn left onto Hennepin Ave 469 ft 3. Take the 1st right onto 3rd St N 0.2 mi 4. Take the ramp onto I-94 W 23.1 mi 5. Take exit 207 for MN-101 toward Elk River/Rogers 0.3 mi 6. Turn right onto Minnesota 101 N 6.8 m 7. Continue onto US-169 N 75.7 mi 8. Turn left onto Hwy 18 SE 171 ft 9. Take the 1st right onto MN-18 W 4.3 mi 10. Turn right onto MN-6 N 9.5 mi 11. Turn left onto E Front St 0.4 mi 12. Take the 3rd right onto MN-210 W/MN-6 N/Archibald Rd Continue to follow MN-210 W/MN-6 N 4.0 mi 13. Turn left onto 3rd Ave SW 0.4 mi 14. Slight right onto MN-210 W/Mesaba St/Oak St Continue to follow MN-210 W 0.9 mi 15. Turn right onto Irene 0.3 mi 16. left onto Portsmouth Mine Road 0.6 m 17. Turn right Destination will be on the right 0.2 mi Unknown road From Duluth MN: Duluth, MN 1. Head southwest on W 1st St toward N 2nd Ave W 0.5 mi 2. Turn left onto Mesaba Ave 0.2 mi 3. Take the I-35/US-53 ramp on the left 0.2 mi 4. Merge onto I-35 S 20.4 mi 5. Take exit 235 for MN-210 toward Carlton/Cromwell 0.3 mi 6. Turn right onto MN-210 W 55.3 mi 7. Turn left onto MN-210 W/US-169 S Continue to follow MN-210 W 18.5 mi 8. Turn right onto MN-210 W/MN-6 N/Archibald Rd Continue to follow MN-210 W/MN-6 N 4.0 mi 9. Turn left onto 3rd Ave SW 0.4 mi 10. Slight right onto MN-210 W/Mesaba St/Oak St Continue to follow MN-210 W 0.9 mi 11. Turn right onto Irene Ave 0.3 mi 12. left onto Portsmouth Mine road 0.6 mi 13. Turn right Destination will be on the right.
System trails (8)
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Cuyuna Lakes Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail conditions

Good (on Jun 18, 2022)
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Camping & Lodging

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Cuyuna Lakes videos

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Rider questions

Q: Is it dog friendly?
A: Yes, leashes must be 6' or less.

Q: Do they close this track when it rains?
A: Unlike some trail systems, Cuyuna's soil is pretty stable after precipitation events. Hence, we do not update for every weather event. Trails are closed while it is raining and generally are open about 2 hours after the end of a rain event unless otherwise noted in our trail conditions.

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  • hollyanne99

    Fun flowing trails! They are smooth, and many are beginner-friendly. I was slightly surprised at over-the-top rave reviews these have received, as they are good, but I felt a two-day trip allowed me to enjoy them and that they weren't exactly the destination I had expected. The bike skills area near the parking lot is great to practice features & jumps. If you're looking for rocks or technical trails, look elsewhere. Smooth flowy trails are what you'll find here.

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  • Elder raven

    Words cant display my true feeling for this area. You just have to ride it yourself. And with all the new trails in 2018 and 2019... And more coming out this year... This place is always number one. My favorites have been Sandhog and screamer but now the new Winze is just ahead of those two. Spent two days here, mastered much of it, but very much looking forward to my next trip. Plan yours today you wont be dissapointed.

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  • Trouthunter777

    The government finally did something right. The investment in this old iron mine area has become something great. Navigation can be frustrating until you catch on to the system. Start by following Galloping Goose which takes you to multiple intermediate and expert loops. Look for the "Trail Entrance" signs and travel in that direction. Don't be put off by the "Easiest" label. While These easy trails may not be physically demanding, they are very fun and interesting.

    When you are done riding, make sure to stop in town for a great burger at Iron Range Eatery.

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  • triton189

    Some of the best trails in the midwest, good facilities and parking as well. Also they have a jump line course.

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  • MooseMaster

    Great trail system for novices and advanced riders. Plenty of miles of single track. Beyond that there is even some paved trails as well.
    What makes Cuyuna amazing is it rarely feels crowded.

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  • ButtHurtlol

    My first time riding these trails, they were a lot of fun. Was a bit turned around looking for main trail head parking lot, but once I found it I was good to go. Went up one Friday after work from twin cities, and will definitely be going back before winter arrives. Trails seemed to go on and on, slightly more rocky than I am used to but not everywhere. Some of the climbs were rough on the legs but the speed and flow on the downhill parts was magical. The only downside for me was I didn't get up to the north end of the trail system with the jumps or technical features, and that was what I was hoping to check out. Definitely worth the drive, and will return!

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  • mongwolf

    Nice trail system. "Pedally" fast and fun, but as TK34 said well, "This ain't CO or UT." and neither is it WA, OR or MT for that matter. Definitely no long killer climbs or long descents. But again, it is a fun system. Also nothing very technical, except for a couple of short stretches. I think the current rating of 4.88 (and a top 20 placing on the Singletracks trails list) substantially overrates the system, but it is still a system for the local mtb community to be proud of. Certainly a job well done and nicely thought out for families. Also the entire system has a super grippy trail surface that obviously drains well. No need for big beefy tires here. If I rode here regularly, I would run a fast tire or maybe even semi-slicks. A fairly well-conditioned rider can easily ride the entire system in one ride. Finally, the system gets used heavily, and I can understand complaints raised below about two-way traffic. This issue has been rectified and many trails are now one-way only. Here are the updated trail maps that you will see out on the trails while riding: for the lower end https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zq3bx4NHII ... for the upper end (mostly two-way) https://mountainbikegeezer.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Yawkey-Unit-Cuyuna-Lakes-Mountain-Bike-Trail-System.jpg ... for the entire system http://www.mobilemaplets.com/showplace/10179. The middle trails connecting the upper and lower units of trails are not well represented in these maps. There are four trails connecting the two units: North and South Drag Line and North and South Switchback. They run on the north and south sides of Portsmouth Mine Lake and Pennington Mine Lake. They are very simple to follow on the trail.

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  • Moiyster

    The trails vary by difficulty but they're all great fun. Be aware that it's not all hard pack Singletrack. There is a lot of loose rocks so use caution. Great views here.

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  • TK34

    I try to save my 5 stars, and Cuyuna is worthy with the caveat that there is not a lot of tech or climbing (this ain't CO or UT). Awesome flow, with some shorter climbs and fast downhill runs (Bobsled, Screamer, Sand Hog). Cool new retail options in Crosby, including a brewery. Low tech cabins and yurts available. Its roughly 2 hours from Minneapolis - totally worth the drive for a day trip or an overnight. If you're from out of state and need more options, both Twin Cities and Duluth have several trails that are no joke - use the Five2Ride lists for both.

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  • C Deuter

    Great, well maintained trail system. Visited with local trail maintenance/riders. The maps are wrong so the directional trails were a little confusing since the maps are still at the trail heads. The local riders said it will be fixed soon.

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  • J-Dogg   ✓ supporter

    Incredible trail system. The rebirth of The Crosby-Ironton area because of MTB. Maps are quickly outdated due to the massive trailbuilding. There is a trail for anybody here. Get to the Red Raven for coffee, beer , breakfast or bike shop/rental. See John.
    Check this:https://vimeo.com/237518233

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  • Justin Colburn

    You simply cannot beat the type of nature of beautiful trees, water and clean air. I am surprised more people haven't commented on this already. If you aren't from the area, it's a must see it, to believe it. Seriously, please stop reading this, grab your keys, load your bike and try it out!

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  • pheasantford

    First time on this trail and had a great time. Thought I was going to crash and die a couple of times; but still fun. Only drawback was where it was 2 way traffic. We almost had a big crash with a guy and his kid on a tandem.

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  • Jeff Barber

    FYI, your rating is only counted once so no need to post multiple reviews. :)

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  • stumpyfsr   ✓ supporter
    Reviewing Bobsled:

    Really fun part of Cuyuna Lakes trail system. The name says it all - you go down and having fun. Then climb back up and repeat.

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  • Mtnbk9717

    Amazing trails for all skill levels.

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  • norsemen

    As many other have stated, Bobsled and Miners are real gems here. Be prepared to climb though, while not difficult you will be doing plenty of it, but the downhill after is worth the burn.

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  • ablack84

    This is an awesome trail system. Most of it is fast and flowy. Sand Hog Mountain, Screamer, and Bobsled are probably the best trails out there. Most of the trails are fairly tame and the climbs are not too bad. If you want technical, there are some sections you can hit off the main trails. Also, Skip, at the top of the Yawkey cluster, offers a technical playground of fun. Be sure to grab some dinner at Louie's Bucket of Bones in Ironton! :-) The history of the area and trail system is also very cool!

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