Welcome to the Cuyuna Lakes State Trail virtual tour! Explore this eight mile ribbon of paved trail, as well as numerous mountain bike trails at the nearby Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area. We hope the tour prompts you to visit the state trail in person sometime soon.
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Miner’s Mountain Trail
The overlook at Miner’s Mountain is the tallest point in the recreation area. It was created by miners, one dump truck at a time, disposing of glacial till and low grade ore. Mountain bike trails cover most of this beautiful hill. There is also a road leading to the top, making it one of the most accessible overlooks in the area. Huntington Mine Lake is in the foreground and is 258 feet deep. This is a great location for observing sunrises, sunsets, star gazing, changing weather conditions, or just catching a cool breeze.
Watch a captioned video about Miner’s Mountain Trail. (1 minute 36 seconds)
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Sand Hog Trail
This exhilarating trail won the International Mountain Bicycling Association’s 2012 Flow Country Trail Award. Just four trails in the world have received this tremendous honor! Sand Hog offers wonderful overlooks on the uphill climb and maximum excitement on the super-long, twisting, bermed filled downhill.
Watch a captioned video about Sand Hog Trail. (1 minute 24 seconds)
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Drag Line Trail
Located on Portsmouth Mine Lake, this trail meanders through the Portsmouth Campground and swimming beach before taking you to one of the tallest hills in the recreation area. The Portsmouth Mine Lake is 395 feet deep. An interpretive kiosk on the east side of the mine lake.
Watch a captioned video about Drag Line Trail. (1 minute 12 seconds)
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Ferrous Wheel Trail
This 360 degree downhill bermed turn will compare favorably with your favorite carnival ride. Ride it fast or ride it slow, the outcome is the same – hoots, hollers, smiles, and great memories.
Watch a captioned video about Ferrous Wheel Trail. (1 minute 24 seconds)
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The Bobsled Trail was named because it closely resembles an Olympic bobsled run. Twists and turns on a long, downhill run define this fan favorite. This trail is a “must ride” and you will most certainly want to ride it several times.
Watch a captioned video about Bobsled Trail. (1 minute 32 seconds)
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Timber Shaft Trail
The Timber Shaft Trail is one of the most advanced and technically challenging mountain bike trails in the system. The trail winds around and on top of iron ore boulders and specially-built wood riding features. It certainly has the “WOW” factor – you’ll see!provides an in-depth look at the Man High balloon launch which occurred here in 1957. The event set a world altitude record and conducted valuable experiments for the space program.
Watch a captioned video about Timber Shaft Trail. (1 minute 46 seconds)
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The recently filled mine lakes provide some of the best visibility for scuba divers in the Midwest. The pictured divers are in the Alstead Mine Lake which is 140 feet deep and loaded with a wide variety of fish to observe. Approximately 50,0000 rainbow and brook trout are stocked annually for anglers. Mahnomen Mine Lake is the deepest mine lake in the recreation area at 525 feet.
Watch a captioned video about SCUBA divers. (1 minute 56 seconds)
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Cuyuna Lakes State Trail - East
This is a great place to explore the history of the Cuyuna Range or start your outdoor adventure. The parking lot serves as a trail-head for the Cuyuna Lakes State Trail and an entry point for the Croft Mine. Kiosks provide in-depth orientation and maps for visitors.
Watch a captioned video about Cuyuna Lakes State Trail. (1 minute 37 seconds)
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Cuyuna Lakes State Trail - West
The Cuyuna Lakes State Trail is one of the state’s best kept secrets with an eight mile ribbon of pavement that winds through the recreation area, passing six lakes, streams, stock piles, overburden piles, iron ore boulders, and mining relics.
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Croft Mine Exterior
The Croft Mine is an underground mine that operated from 1914 – 1934, producing 1,770,669 tons of iron ore. This historic site now offers a museum, simulated mine shaft, and authentic mining artifacts. The old concrete cap with the steel buckets on top is the original Croft Mine shaft. The white building with the green doors is the original dry house.
Watch a captioned video about the historic Croft Mine. (1 minute 27 seconds)
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Croft Mine Interior
The dry house that now houses the museum once served as a locker room for the underground miners. As they came to work, they would change into their mining clothes. At the end of their shift, they would shower and change back into their everyday clothes. In the museum you can observe rare photos, unique artifacts, and interesting relics from the iron ore mining era.
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The Portsmouth Campground is located on the northwest shore of the Portsmouth Mine Lake (395 feet deep). It has 25 campsites (18 of which are electric), one group camp, and a swimming beach. Most campsites are in an open setting to promote socializing, while the others are more secluded to offer a sense of privacy.