Headwaters Challenge

Park Rapids, Minnesota

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Northern Minnesota is the land of the mythical giant lumberjack Paul Bunyan. Legends tell of Paul clearing whole forests with a swing of his ax. The truth was that, to the lumber barons, every tree had a dollar sign on it, and they brought armies of men and animals to cut the trees and leave behind a landscape as desolate as the moon. Along the road you'll see larger second-growth trees mixed with stands of smaller aspen trees. Aspen is the popular species in logging these days; it regenerates in a mere twenty years and is used to make chipboard panels for building construction. Entering Itasca State Park, you'll be enthralled by the stately, old-growth forest, just as Jacob Brower was before he became the driving force behind creating Itasca State Park in 1891. The huge white and red pines inspire a reverence for nature that a managed, harvested forest never can.
Best Bike Rides in the Midwest

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Best Bike Rides in the Midwest

by Phil Van Valkenburg (The Globe Pequot Press)

Northern Minnesota is the land of the mythical giant lumberjack Paul Bunyan. Legends tell of Paul clearing whole forests with a swing of his ax. The truth was that, to the lumber barons, every tree had a dollar sign on it, and they brought armies of men and animals to cut the trees and leave behind a landscape as desolate as the moon.

Along the road you'll see larger second-growth trees mixed with stands of smaller aspen trees. Aspen is the popular species in logging these days; it regenerates in a mere twenty years and is used to make chipboard panels for building construction. Entering Itasca State Park, you'll be enthralled by the stately, old-growth forest, just as Jacob Brower was before he became the driving force behind creating Itasca State Park in 1891. The huge white and red pines inspire a reverence for nature that a managed, harvested forest never can.

©  Phil Van Valkenburg/The Globe Pequot Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Road Biking
Nearby City: Park Rapids
Distance: 81.2
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Difficult
Local Contacts: Headwaters 100, Park Rapids Chamber of Commerce 800-247-0054
Driving Directions: Directions to Headwaters Challenge

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Apr 2018