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Into the Woods

Looking for adventure on land?  Look no further!  The greater Leech Lake area has miles and miles of trails from Itasca State Park to the old railroad trail and many trails in between.  Outdoor enthusiasts can find trails to suit your interest, whether it be hiking, biking, snowshoeing, skiing, or snowmobiling, there's a trail for you!


Located approximately 38 miles from the Decoy Lodge, Itasca State Park offers plenty of options for exploration.  The Park is home to the Headwaters of the Mississippi River, where it begins its 1,475 mile journey to the Gulf of Mexico!  Itasca State Park features an interpretive center, biking/hiking/skiing/snowmobiling trails, and the historic Douglas Lodge Restaurant.

Spanning more than 660,000 acres (more than three times the size of New York City), there's something for everyone in the Chippewa National Forest.  There are trails for skiing, biking riding, hiking and snowmobiling, as well as spots to fish and boat.  The Forest also features unique sites such as the Lost 40 which has 144 acres of 300–400 year-old virgin red and white pine trees. 

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The North Country Trail spans approximately 4,800 miles and extends from North Dakota all the way to Vermont.  Each segment of the trail offers something different and allows different types of activities.  For more information visit the trail website.

Running 49 miles from Park Rapids to Cass Lake, the Heartland Trail is part of the rails to trails project which established recreational trails on the old Great Northern railroad grade.  A majority of the trail is paved and is suitable for hiking, bike riding, and snowmobiling.  The trail connects the communities of Park Rapids, Dorset, Nevis, Akeley, Walker, and Cass Lake.   


To the South of the Decoy Lodge, runs the Paul Bunyan Trail along the old Northern Pacific rail line.  This trail is also paved, running 115 miles from Baxter to Bemidji.  The Shingobee Connection connects the Paul Bunyan trail to Walker and the Heritage Trail just across Hwy 371 from the Decoy Lodge.

**If you've never tried e-biking, you're in for a real treat!  Call our friends at Northlakes Electric Bikes in Hackensack to reserve a half day or full day rental of the most fun you can have on the ground.  Pedal if you want or hold down the throttle and let the battery do the work!  We highly recommend the Paul Bunyan Trail to Shingobee Connection to Heartland Trail back to the Paul Bunyan trail loop.

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