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Old 06-14-12, 12:04 PM   #1
trail_rider
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The MRT (Mississippi River Trail) MN part

Hey guys. I was wondering if anyone has ridden the MRT (Mississippi River Trail). I live in Hastings MN, and I have looked at the mapped out route that they have online. I was just wondering if anyone has ridden it and can tell me how much traffic there is, because it seems it is mostly on road shoulders. I am not that overly confident biking in traffic yet.
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Old 06-14-12, 07:00 PM   #2
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I've ridden sections of it and the roads are mostly lower traffic or have shoulders with enough room. Probably no different than what you'll experience on any of the back roads (including what's needed to get to them) near Hastings.

There are a couple of sections on the north of the river route that can be busy and less than ideal (a short stretch on Manning with no paved shoulder and a 4 inch drop to the 2 foot wide dirt one). Once you get west of Manning, then it's all nice lower traffic roads up to 494. Do yourself a favor and hit Grey Cloud island and take in the eagles nest visible to the south from the northern bridge off the island (then take the road into St Paul Park south/west of the CP line). For some reason the mapped route avoids that by swinging up towards cottage grove, and I can't imagine why they did it that way...

On the south side, the shoulders are pretty wide and it's busier roads (I like the northern route, but sometimes do hastings to 494 as a circle both north and south).

Wear a bright color jersey, and expect the occasional sans-muffler pickup truck brushing a bit too close in cottage grove (complete with 93x bumper sticker etc), otherwise OK.

Last edited by Chrome Molly; 06-14-12 at 07:05 PM.
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Old 06-15-12, 08:36 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. One more thing, do you know a website were you can download the route so i know where i am going.
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Old 06-15-12, 06:22 PM   #4
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Thanks for the reply. One more thing, do you know a website were you can download the route so i know where i am going.
http://www.dot.state.mn.us/bike/mrt/maps.html
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Old 06-17-12, 05:35 PM   #5
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Thanks, i think i am going to ride the Ravenna Trail road. Hopefully i don't get hit. It is supposed to be a low volume road. I am just a little nervous. On google maps it doesnt seem like there is much of a shoulder. I am just not that confident...

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Old 06-17-12, 11:30 PM   #6
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Thanks, i think i am going to ride the Ravenna Trail road. Hopefully i don't get hit. It is supposed to be a low volume road. I am just a little nervous. On google maps it doesnt seem like there is much of a shoulder. I am just not that confident...
My friend biked to Louisiana. Her journal may be of some routing assistance.
http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/p...id=166517&v=FJ
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Old 06-28-12, 08:51 AM   #7
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Go here: http://www.mississippirivertrail.org/ and you'll find maps broken down by north, middle and south. I followed the MRT, more or less, from Ft Madison, Iowa to New Orleans. It works mostly. Nothing's perfect but it's good.

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