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Minnesota’s Rocori Trail, named for the three small towns through which it will eventually run (Rockville, Cold Spring, and Richmond), currently has two disconnected segments open for use.
The first section of trail opened in 2009 in the quaint downtown area of Rockville. Built during the reconstruction of Broadway Street/County Road 82, the 1-mile stretch of trail is immediately adjacent to the road, allowing for easy access to residences, businesses, and city hall.
A longer portion of trail opened in 2012 between 178th Avenue, roughly halfway between Cold Spring and Richmond, and the eastern city limit of Cold Spring at the Sauk River. This 3-mile section uses a former BNSF Railway corridor and is parallel to MN 23 for nearly its entire length. At 178th Avenue the trail seamlessly connects to the Glacial Lakes State Trail.
In 2017, another segment was opened, extending from Mill Street & Broadway in Rockville to 235th Street.
The headquarters of Coldspring (formerly the Cold Spring Granite company), nationally known for contributing to both the FDR Memorial and Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., is located at the trail’s western terminus. Other sites along the way include the Cold Spring Baseball Park (a short trek up Seventh Avenue in Cold Spring) and the sprawling Rich-Spring Golf Club (across MN 23 from the trail).
Features along this short trail include views of the Sauk River, the Rockville granite quarry, Cold Spring dam and waterfall, and scenic countryside and parks.
The final phase will link the existing segments in Cold Spring and Rockville together. The project will include the rehabilitation of an original railroad trestle over the Sauk River. Longer-term plans also call for extending this trail east all the way to St. Cloud. Besides the Glacial Lakes State Trail, the Rocori Trail is part of a network of trails, including the Lake Wobegon Trail and the Lake Koronis Recreational Trail in Paynesville.
To reach the segment in Rockville, take I-94 to Exit 164. Head southwest on MN 23, and go 3.2 miles. Turn right onto County Road 82/Broadway St. You can park and access the trail anywhere along Broadway St.
To reach the trailhead on the Sauk River in Cold Spring, take I-94 to Exit 164. Head southwest on MN 23, and go 9 miles. Turn right onto Main St.; parking is located on the right in 0.2 mile.
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