Lace Up: An Intern’s Guide To The Top Trails In Minneapolis

April 25, 2018

After trucking through a classic Minnesota April filled with snowstorms and cold blasts, it appears that spring has indeed (finally) sprung. With spring comes sunshine, clear roads and shorts weather — three beautiful blessings to Minnesota runners. After months and months of snow-covered trails, triple-layered socks and frozen eyelashes, it’s time to break out the summer gear. Now we can lace up and hit the stunning (and now clear) trails of Minneapolis. I have grown to appreciate these trails since moving to Minneapolis four years ago.

In honor of the newly sprung spring I am going to take you through a few of my hidden gems when it comes to running routes in Minneapolis. These are my tried-and-true top trails to get your two feet on. Whether you are a seasoned runner or lacing up for the first time, I hope you check out these trails and enjoy them as much as I have!

Dinkytown Loop

As I currently reside in Dinkytown, this is one of my most frequent (and most favorite) routes. It truly showcases some of the greatest parts of Minneapolis. With incredible views of Gold Medal tower as you come across Stone Arch and can’t-miss sights of TCF Bank Stadium, this loop is a treat to your eyes and feet.

Chain Of Lakes: Harriet + Calhoun Loop

This loop is a great way to kick off a Saturday morning. There isn’t a greater time to run this route and experience the community and energy on the trail. Dogs, kids, strollers, families – everyone is out and about actively enjoying the paths. Prepare for picturesque views and friendly faces as you run around two incredibly beautiful Minnesota lakes. I highly recommend taking this one at sunrise.

Midtown Greenway

This is (in my opinion) the hidden gem of running trails in Minneapolis. It isn’t as well-known or often busy, making it a sweet place of quiet, calm solitude. The best part? It gets you places. Hop on it off of West River Parkway near University of Minnesota East Bank and take it for as long as you please. Trail highlights include a stunning view of the city as you cross the Hiawatha bridge, hearing the traffic above you off of Nicollet Mall, and stumbling upon the Chain of Lakes. I’m telling you this trail is a can’t-miss.

East River Road

Trails along the Mississippi River make it an essential choice when it comes to Minneapolis running routes. Hop on wherever you like and let it take you to sweeping views of the Mississippi, through multiple local university campuses, and onto the St. Paul side of things. If you’re up for it, connect to Summit Ave to run past the James J. Hill House and end at the State Capitol. Now that is a route worth running!

Whether you’re a runner or not, these trails and routes are open to you. Grab a water bottle and a pal and check them out. See you on the trails!