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Minnesota boasts the origin of the Mississippi River and is at the northernmost end of the Great River Road.  Starting at Lake Itasca, where you can wade across the river, this route follows the Great River Road all the way to the Southeast corner of Minnesota and ends in New Albin, IA.  The route passes through many historic towns and cities including Bemidji, Grand Rapids, Brainerd, St. Cloud, Little Falls, Red Wing, Lake City, and of course the Twin Cities.


The Minnesota Great River Road route is broken into 3 separate legs, with an individual .gpx file for each leg.  As a bonus, we have added an optional leg to this route that will take riders to the Canadian Border at International Falls.


Note:  We have created 2 sets of routes for each state.  1 is for riding North to South and the other is for riding South to North.  Each route is notated either N to S (for North to South) or S to N (for South to North).


Location:  North Central and Southeast Minnesota

Approximate Mileage:  680 miles

Estimated Riding Time: 16.5 hours 

Road Surface:  Paved w/ ½ Mile of Gravel




  • Little Falls - Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery, Minnesota Military Museum, Charles Lindbergh House and Museum
  • Minneapolis - St. Anthony Falls, Fort Snelling
  • International Falls - Smokey Bear Park, Big Vic Voyageur Statue
  • Sartell - Sartell Veterans Park
  • Bemidji - Paul Bunyan and Babe
  • Champlin - Mississippi Point Park
  • Shelvin - Mississippi Headwaters Center
  • Park Rapids - Jacob Brower Visitor Center
  • Brooklyn Park - Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park
  • Brainerd - Brainerd Welcome Center
  • Bena - Big Fish



Great River Road - Minnesota

  • If you are riding with a group, we ask that every person using our route for navigation purchase their own copy.


    In order to encourage this, we are happy to offer a discount for group purchases. Please contact us after purchasing 1 item at full price, and we will set up a coupon code that will give everyone in your group 50% off of the same item.

  • Our digital routes are designed to operate in most GPS devices.  In addition to GPSs, our routes should work with several smartphone apps.  They will NOT work on Google Maps or Apple Maps.


    If you plan on using a smartphone app, we recommend the REVER app.  REVER will work with both Android and iOS and in addition to navigation it has many other great features.


    For best results in REVER, download the route to your computer first, then import into your smartphone.  Turn by turn may not work, so we recommend that you utilize the "Follow the Line" option. 


    You can get 20% off your first year’s subscription to REVER by following THIS LINK.

    AND using this coupon code at checkout:  Driftlessforless.


    By using this link and coupon code a portion of your subscription fee will go to support Driftless Roads USA.

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