Bike and canoe the Mississippi River - exciting multi-modal adventure awaits!
Bicyclists, birders, canoeists, historians, naturalists, seekers of beautiful scenery, and others visit the Mississippi River in search of its diverse resources, intrigues, and stories. While bicycling is great in and of itself, you might consider expanding your horizons on your next bicycle trip to see what else is attracting others to the river.
For example, it’s possible and convenient to float some of the Mississippi in a canoe or kayak between bicycling segments. After all, the Minnesota Legislature has designated the entire length of the Mississippi River within Minnesota as a “Water Trail”.That means there are canoe/kayak outfitters distributed along the entire length of the river and some even have the ability to ferry your bicycle ahead so you can meet it down river.
And don’t overlook the Mississippi River within the Twin Cities. After all, the river is the reason for the national park: The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, which stretches 72 miles from Dayton to Hastings. This stretch of river includes waterfalls, historic sites, tall river bluffs, barges, 4 locks and dams, 18 cities, and 19 bald eagle nests! Many people think of the popular lakes that dot the Twin Cities, but paddling is also a wonderful way to see the origins of the Twin Cities. The Mississippi River Companion can guide your exploration of this national park. Use the Companion to find water trails, boat landings, marinas, local and regional bicycle and pedestrian trails, major landmarks, historical sites, parks, and natural areas along the Mississippi River. However, MRT travelers may note inconsistencies between the Mississippi River Companion and the current MRT route—therefore, follow the bicycle route as illustrated on the maps within this MnDOT website (future revisions to the Companion will reconcile all route differences).