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Looking for Information on Paul Bunyan Trail

Old 02-23-19, 03:58 PM
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shona
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Looking for Information on Paul Bunyan Trail

My husband and I are considering flying to Minnesota this summer and riding road bikes on the Paul Bunyan Trail. We would like to stay in one place (don't want to move around) in either a hotel or VRBO and ride from there. Where is it easy to fly into where we wouldn't be located at either end of the trail? Thanks
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Old 02-24-19, 02:13 AM
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ober27
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Fly into Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP), from there you can fly into Bemidji (BJI). That puts you at the north end of the trail. You'll also be about 35 miles from Itasca State Park, which is the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Also about 35 miles from Bemidji is the town of Walker. Walker is at the intersection of the Paul Bunyan State Trail, and the Heartland State Trail which is about 55 miles long. It would be difficult to fly into any of the mid trail communities, they're all quite small.
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Old 02-24-19, 07:51 AM
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shona
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Thank you ober 27
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Old 03-07-19, 09:55 PM
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So, there are places you can fly to besides MSP. But I think Duluth is the only place you can fly into where you won't have to go through MSP anyway. Are you planning to rent a car for when you aren't on the bikes? If so, its about 2hrs 15 min drive from MSP to Brainerd which is the southern most 4nd of the trail. Or , go about an hour and 10 min further north to Walker. That puts you nearer the middle of the trail but its the intersection of the Paul Bunyon and Heartland trails, so there are options there. Walker is a smaller town with only a couple of places to stay and not a lot of restaurants but a very nice little town.

But whatever you do wait a while before your come. Right now, it looks like we still have at least another week or two of snowmobiling on those trails. I do sometimes see some fat tire guys out there while I'm snowmobiling though
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Old 03-12-19, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by ober27 View Post
Fly into Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP), from there you can fly into Bemidji (BJI). That puts you at the north end of the trail. You'll also be about 35 miles from Itasca State Park, which is the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Also about 35 miles from Bemidji is the town of Walker. Walker is at the intersection of the Paul Bunyan State Trail, and the Heartland State Trail which is about 55 miles long. It would be difficult to fly into any of the mid trail communities, they're all quite small.
We stayed at the Doubletree in Bemidji which is right on the trail! You don't have to drive anywhere, just pop out of you hotel, mount up and ride away. (There is also a cheaper Hampton Inn next door to the Doublttree.)

Glenn in Florida
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Old 11-08-19, 06:30 PM
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Chase on the Lake in Walker

For anyone finding this thread in the future the place to stay and do day rides is Chase on the Lake Hotel in Walker. The trail goes through their parking lot and it allows you to ride on both the Paul Bunyan and the Heartland trail because they intersect near Walker. So you can have 4 different day rides from one place to stay.

Cheers
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Old 11-08-19, 09:46 PM
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ober27
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You can do 4 out and back rides, plus there is one great loop to do out of Walker. You can ride west out of Walker on the Heartland Trail, turn south/ east on the Paul Bunyan Trail, then north to return on the Shingobee Connection. This approximately 25 mile loop is one of the more challenging loops we have in the area, very hilly. If the Chase Hotel is beyond your price range, there are two other hotels in town, plus one campground right on the trail. Walker's a great little town to visit, not just for bicyclists. We live about 40 miles away so we make several day trips there each summer.
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