We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lovely paved trail” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Willard Munger State Trail

Willard Munger State Trail
, Duluth, MN
Website
Improve this listing
Ranked #31 of 74 things to do in Duluth
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
61 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Lovely paved trail”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

Really beautiful trail that runs for 63 miles from Hinkley to Duluth. The entire thing is paved, although there are a few spots where the pavement got washed out by the floods of 2012. There was dirt/ gravel in those sections, which were no more than 200 feet in any one spot. Easily rideable with a road bike, as long as you are careful. I am assuming those spots will be repaved, as there is fresh asphalt in many sections. There are also some areas that have bumps and cracks, but it looks like they are marked for repair.

West of the park road by about a mile you cross the St Louis River, which as noted by others is spectacular. If you only do that bit, it would be worth it. The river bridge is also only about 2 miles from Carlton, so you can access it that way. There are nice bike racks (Thanks MN DNR!) if you want to lock up and walk down to the river or take photos.

East of the park road you ride along the Forebay canal/lake, which emptied in a breach and cut a 150 foot gap in Hwy 210. The trail is probably the best place to see the damage, since you are above it. They are supposed to start refilling the canal in fall 2013, but it was still empty as of Labor Day.

I didn’t go all the way to Duluth, which is 13 miles. There is a slight downhill towards Duluth, so be aware of that: You still have to ride back, and it is just a little harder going west. But being an old RR bed, the grade is very slight, unnoticeable to most people.

Visited September 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

39 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    23
    14
    1
    1
    0
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Oshkosh, Wisconsin, United States
Level Contributor
30 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Two different trail types”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2013

We biked from Hinkley to Carlton on the first day. Very flat, mainly open with views of farm fields. Second day biked from Carlton to Duluth and back, very scenic, more rolling hills, much more beautiful than the first day. No places right off the trail to stop for refreshments unlike the Hinckley to Carlton stretch. Recommend stopping at The Streetcar in Carlton for a good meal and Joe Jitters in Moose Lake.

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shoreview, Minnesota
Level Contributor
31 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Flat, Fast and scenic”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2013

We just did the southern half of the Willard Munger Trail this past weekend. The trip from Hinkley to Barnum was very easy and enjoyable. Most of the people that we talked to seemed to think that this was the "boring" part of the trail, but we found it to be delightful! The trail crosses three or four rivers and the scenery is varied enough to capture your attention. At times, the trail is bordered by evergreens or birch trees, making a leafy tunnel through the woods. Gorgeous! There are towns at least every 10 miles and well-marked trailheads.

I would caution folks to bring a lot of water on this leg, as there are no water spigots at the trailheads that we could find. Not every stop has a bathoom, either. Willow Creek offers a really nice bathroom and parking lot. None in Finlayson. Hinkley is the southern trailhead and it only has a large porta-potty - no water or trash cans (which we found odd - specially when they warn you against throwing your trash away in the porta potty!) There are restaurants in Willow River, Moose Lake and Barnum (up by 35W) that did the trick. In a pinch there are lots of gas station/convenience stores, too (Finlayson has a nice one).

The trail is flat as can be, except for a mile or so around Finlayson. The ATV trails are off to the west, so you're not bothered too badly by the noise or dust. The trail is blacktopped and they've done a pretty good job of patching and maintaining the trail. We can't wait to do the northern half in the future!

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Duluth, Minnesota
Level Contributor
25 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Everyday”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

Wonderful Trail for biking, hiking or skating. A gem. Pet friendly and safe. Trail mostly completely repaired.

Visited July 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Japan
Level Contributor
102 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Natures Best with Convenience.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2013

What a gorgeous example of what makes Minnesota special. Woods, meadows and streams bordered by wild flowers and grazing deer. A level, well maintained trail that appeals to all ages and many levels of fitness.

Visited June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Willard Munger State Trail also viewed

 

Been to Willard Munger State Trail? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Willard Munger State Trail, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.