Rochester, MN Birding Trails and Maps

194 Reviews

Looking for the best Birding trails around Rochester?

Find the top rated birding trails in Rochester, whether you're looking for an easy short birding trail or a long birding trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a birding trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.

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Activities
Length
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Type
19 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

Blazing Star State Trail

6 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Cannon Valley Trail

19.7 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Chippewa River State Trail

38.5 mi
State: WI
Asphalt

Douglas State Trail

12.5 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Douglas-Cascade Trail

2 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Goodhue Pioneer State Trail

9.7 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Great River Ridge State Trail

13 mi
State: MN
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Great River State Trail

24 mi
State: WI
Crushed Stone

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

18 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Mill Towns State Trail

6 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail

20 mi
State: IA
Asphalt

Red Wing Riverfront Trail

0.5 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

River Bend Trail

1 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Root River State Trail

42 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Sakatah Singing Hills State Trail

39 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Shooting Star State Trail

18.8 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Straight River Trail

8 mi
State: MN
Asphalt

Wapsi-Great Western Line Trail

27 mi
State: IA
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

Zumbro South Trail

9.9 mi
State: MN
Asphalt
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
The Blazing Star State Trail is located in Albert Lea, near Minnesota’s southern border. The town is known as “The Land Between the Lakes,” and the trail begins on the northern shore of one of the...
MN 6 mi Asphalt
The Cannon Valley Trail, which became a National Recreation Trail in 2018, links the southeastern Minnesota communities of Red Wing, Welch, and Cannon Falls along the former route of the Chicago Great...
MN 19.7 mi Asphalt
The 30.4-mile Chippewa River State Trail kicks off at the confluence of the Eau Claire and Chippewa Rivers in downtown Eau Claire’s Phoenix Park, where visitors can access a walking labyrinth,...
WI 38.5 mi Asphalt
The Douglas State Trail occupies the railbed of the former Chicago Great Western Railway corridor between the cities of Rochester and Pine Island. Several of the concrete obelisk railroad mile markers...
MN 12.5 mi Asphalt
The Douglas-Cascade Trail extends 2 miles southeast towards downtown Rochester from the southern terminus of the Douglas State Trail. The paved trail, a portion of which follows the former Chicago...
MN 2 mi Asphalt
The Goodhue Pioneer State Trail is a work in progress as part of a planned 47-mile trail linking the cities of Red Wing, Goodhue, Zumbrota, Mazeppa, Bellechester, and Pine Island along an inactive...
MN 9.7 mi Asphalt
The Great River Ridge State Trail runs for 13 miles between County Road 9 just north of Eyota and Third Street Southwest just north of Wabasha Street in the town of Plainview, which serves as the...
MN 13 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Great River State Trail is named for the Mississippi River, but Ol’ Man River stays mostly out of sight if you follow this 24-mile trail through river marshes, wildlife preserves, hardwood...
WI 24 mi Crushed Stone
The Harmony–Preston Valley State Trail runs 18 miles on a north-south line between the town of Harmony and the Root River State Trail, which it meets between Lanesboro and Fountain. The paved trail is...
MN 18 mi Asphalt
At one time, flour and grist mills dotted the Cannon River Valley. These mills formed the backbone industry for a number of towns. The Mill Towns State Trail seeks to honor this legacy with a planned...
MN 6 mi Asphalt
The Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail follows part of the former Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railroad corridor, which traces its origins as far back as 1866. Its history lives on in...
IA 20 mi Asphalt
Although only stretching a half mile, the paved Red Wing Riverfront Trail, which opened in 2016, offers an important connection between two parks along the Mississippi River in the charming community...
MN 0.5 mi Asphalt
Although short, the River Bend Trail provides access to a recreational gem, the River Bend Nature Center, a 750-acre park with woodlands, prairie, rivers, and ponds. Along the way, the paved trail...
MN 1 mi Asphalt
Along much of its route, the Root River State Trail follows the winding course of its namesake river for 42 miles through the Minnesota towns of Fountain, Lanesboro, Whalan, Peterson, Rushford, and...
MN 42 mi Asphalt
This trail is so nice they named it twice: Sakatah is the Dakota word for “singing hills.” The Dakota people of the Great Sioux Nation originally lived in this scenic part of Minnesota, where the Big...
MN 39 mi Asphalt
Shooting Star State Trail, currently 19 miles long, is an 8-foot-wide asphalt path from LeRoy (east) to Rose Creek (west). It follows an unused railroad bed on Milwaukee Road, which once stretched...
MN 18.8 mi Asphalt
The Straight River Trail forms a backwards L as it runs north-south through Faribault and then curves west. The paved trail begins at the Cannon River Reservoir, then travels through woodlands in Two...
MN 8 mi Asphalt
The Wapsi–Great Western Line Trail is a 27-mile pathway on the former Chicago Great Western Railroad. The trail passes through a plethora of backdrops, including wide, rolling landscapes, Iowa...
IA 27 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
Offering nearly 10 miles of paved pathway through Rochester, the Zumbro South Trail serves as both an important transportation route and recreational destination. As the western end of the trail...
MN 9.9 mi Asphalt

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Trails by activity

Recent Trail Reviews

Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail

July 2019

September, 2019 by hawkeyebellz

This is a great trail but needs plenty of TLC. The ride is very bumpy with holes in the asphalt in many spots. The approaches to the bridges are also very rough and need repair. Absolutely love the Harmony and Preston area just hoping for improvements before going back.

Root River State Trail

Fountain to Houston

September, 2019 by jakebres

The best trail by far that i have done so far. For the most part it is well kept. I started in Fountain and biked to Houston which is the end of the 42 mile-ish trail and then biked back for about a 7 hour ride total. This is a very welcoming trail for all levels. Lansboro is just a fabulous little town that is a must to visit. Always hopping on the weekends!! There is just enough towns and places to stop to refuel on the route. Will definately to this again.

Mill Towns State Trail

Great Trail With Beautiful Waterfalls at Lake Byllesby

August, 2019 by twdfish

Biked the Cannon Valley Trail and before going to the Cannon Falls trailhead, took the Mill Towns Trail to see what it was like. First part of trail is old and rough, and then you have to go on a dirt trail through a park and up a hill in class 5 rock before you get to the smooth, great trail by the fairgrounds. Wonderful ride that takes you past the beautiful waterfalls and dam at Lake Byllesby. Before the dam, if you go left, it's the Goodhue County park section of Lake Byllesby and the trail ends there. If you keep to the right, you cross the bridge and the dam and waterfalls from Lake Byllsbye are beautiful. Past the bridge you enter the Dakota County park section of the lake, and if you follow the path past the RV camping section, you get to the beach. Terrific beach with really nice bathrooms. Great trail - so glad we ventured off to bike it.

Accordion

Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail

Very nice trail

August, 2019 by michael barnard

I had a little trouble finding the trailhead on Cresco but once I did, I was on my way. Had a flat tire on the way to Ridgeway. Got the tube changed and rode on to Ridgeway. Lost my keys where I changed my tube and had to go back to try and find them. Luckily I found them and rode back to Cresco. The part of the trail I was on I enjoyed. I am defiantly coming back to ride this trail again as I have some unfinished business riding from Ridgeway to Calmar.

Wapsi-Great Western Line Trail

Pleasant Ride

August, 2019 by michael barnard

I camped at Lake Hendricks Park the half-way point of the trail. Easy access from the park to the trail. I rode the north section first and had the wind at my back. Could not pick up the trail in Ridgeway and had to ask for directions. Rode the trail all the way north and they are paving the last section to or the first section in Minnesota. Crashed on my return trip to campground and bent up the wheel of bike. Got a replacement rim in Cresco and rode the south portion of the trail in the afternoon to Elma. Wind was strong and it was tough going but the ride back was nice. The map is a little off. The trail is now paved completely from Elma to the border north of Riceville. I would ride on this trail again just because it is a nice trail and there are some scenic features.

Cannon Valley Trail

Used to be a great trail!

August, 2019 by breebertz

I've always loved this trail. I don't mind dropping $5 for a wheel pass if it's going straight into maintenance on the trail. Unfortunately, this trail is now in a pretty bad state of disrepair. There are great stretches, but there are sadly several terrible stretches. Most notably about three quarters of the way to Red Wing from Cannon Falls. One rut almost bounced me off my road bike. Please start spending some of that cash you collect!

Great River Ridge State Trail

One of the Best

August, 2019 by marketblandings

An usually beautiful trail in an unexpected farmfield and streams landscape. The original railway that is the basis of this trail was quite unusual in that it does not parallel the roads in the area much. So, we are treated to a ride right through crop fields in a very unusual bluffy/hilly agricultural area. The wooded parts of the ride cross streams over and over again. Beautiful but be warned: this is one of the most intensely buggy rides ever. Whatever they are, they swarm your face at every stop. Worth it with bug spray and/ or later in Fall.

Sakatah Singing Hills State Trail

Invigorating trail

August, 2019 by plmorty_tl

We road this trail 42 miles from Mankato to Fairbault on a cloudy Sunday afternoon. The trail is mostly flat. About the only true hill you'll encounter is when you go to an overpass near Mankato. There aren't any markings on the trail to tell you distance to the next town. We thought it would be nice if there were either mile markers or signs that stated "Elysian 5.2 miles" just to give some idea of where you were. The trail is in excellent condition except the segment from Elysian to Waterville. Here you'll find ruts, cracks, and holes in the pavement which bounce you around for about 13 miles. We had to slow the pace in this area so as not to rattle our brains. There were plenty of other bikers on the trail as well. If you decide to ride the whole trail in one day you'll be pleased to know that some of the small towns have bar and grill restaurants and ice cream shops right off the trail. Overall a very pleasant ride.

Mill Towns State Trail

Not great for inline skating

August, 2019 by rasmisek1

This trail is not smooth... there are rocks, sticks, grass growing and the sticky black tar all in/on the trail! And you have to cross the railway which is not easy with skates! If you want to ride a bike I’m sure it would be no problem or if you really want a challenge while skating go for it, but I won’t be skating this trail again.. oh and it’s poorly marked so I had to turn around a couple times before I found the right direction

Sakatah Singing Hills State Trail

easy ride

July, 2019 by russjean

Biked from Waterville to Faribault Sunday July 7th. Surface was in excellent shape and we knew we were in Minnesota when there was a Dairy Queen at the end of the trail. Good day of riding. Monday July 8th we biked from Elysian to Mankato. Excellent trail conditions and a fawn was on the trail. We stopped but it kept running towards until almost up to us. It stopped took a closer look and bolted into the woods. Busy trail for a Monday good to see many people out.

Chippewa River State Trail

Another Great Wisconsin Trail

June, 2019 by heochief

This is a great trail experience, A paved trail that hugs the Chippewa River for most of the trail. When not hugging the river it travels through a tunnel of tress and some open fields. We found most of the trail was shaded. Many scenic views of the river and the tree covered areas are just as scenic. Wonderful trail and we will return in fall.

Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail

Nice Trail

June, 2019 by jakebres

Living in Ridgeway this an easy go to trail. I have biked from Ridgeway to Cresco and that portion is nice and flat. It is also next to a highway which i dont care for. The part from Ridgeway to Calmar is the go to section i frequently ride. Nice and flat and you also get a feel of being out in the country. Only a few roads to cross but other than that its nature and you. Well worth your time if you want a nice and comfortable bike ride. Going through Ridgeway would be your only querk. Just follow the signs and you should be ok. Trail is well marked and both Cresco and Calmar have gas stations close.

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