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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 25 mile trail that will pass through these historic milling communities: Faribault, Dundas, Northfield, Waterford, Randolph, and Cannon Falls.
Currently there are 3 segments open: One runs for 2 miles from Cannon Falls to Lake Byllesby Park, a reservoir on the Cannon River. The trail begins at Hannahs Bend Park in Cannon Falls, and its smooth asphalt winds through tranquil prairie and farmland on its way west. The river first comes into view as you approach the US Highway 52 underpass, then is screened again by vegetation right up to the end, where a bridge offers wonderful views of the Cannon River on one side, and the Lake Byllesby dam on the other. It’s only about 1/8 mile from Hannahs Bend Park to Riverside Park, where the Cannon Falls City Trails begins its brief journey alongside the Little Cannon River.
A second segment sits at 3 miles between Dundas and Northfield. You can start at Mill Park or a little further at the designated Mill Towns State Trail trailhead. The trail heads northeast sitting between Dundas Boulevard on the left and active train tracks in the west. The trail crosses the railroad into Sechler Park and ends a little bit past that along Sechler Park Road.
The shortest open portion is just 1 mile long, between 17th Street and Park Avenue in the city of Faribault.
Cannon Falls to Lake Byllesby Dam
In Cannon Falls
At Lake Byllesby:
Dundas to Northfield Segment
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