Trails

Blue Hill Trail

Open Season: Year round
Length: 5 miles
Location of trail: Trailhead is off of Sherburne County Road 9, 1.2 miles west of refuge headquarters
Surface: Natural, Bridges
Difficulty: Moderate
Information: Five miles in total, this hiking trail has three loops that take you through prairie, oak savanna and coniferous habitats. Venture up to the overlook for a vista of the surrounding area, as Blue Hill is the highest point in Sherburne County. This is also the place on the refuge to spot natural rock deposits left behind by glaciers.

Mahnomen Trail

Open Season: Year round
Length: 3 miles
Location of trail: Trailhead is off of Sherburne County Road 9, 0.2 miles east of refuge headquarters
Surface: Natural, Boardwalk
Difficulty: Easy
Information: Three miles in total, this hiking trail has three loops that take you through prairie, oak savanna and wetland habitats. Prime for birding, the edge habitat and trail are popular during spring and fall migrations. This trail is open to hunting only during the November firearm deer season, with signage posted at the trailhead alerting visitors during that time frame. During the winter months, it is groomed for classic cross-country skiing when snow levels are sufficient.

Oak Savanna Learning Center Trails

Open Season: Year round
Length: 2 miles
Location of trail: Trails begin at the Oak Savanna Learning Center
Surface: Crushed granite, Accessible 
Difficulty: Easy
Information: These trails include the Overlook, Beaver Lodge, Old School House and Black Bear loops. Mostly flat, the loops have some gentle inclines that are wheelchair and stroller friendly. The floating dock and wildlife observation blind are popular destinations.

Bur Oak Trail

Open Season: Year round (access by vehicle spring through fall)
Length: 0.1 miles
Location of trail: Bur Oak Welcome Station on the Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive
Surface: Paved, Accessible 
Difficulty: Easy
Information: This short trail takes you through oak savanna, a habitat that has become rare within the state. This flat loop is accessible and there are two picnic tables located near or on the trail.

Prairie Trail

Open Season: Year round (access by vehicle spring through fall)
Length: 0.5 miles
Location of trail: Trailhead is at mile 1.5 of the Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive
Surface: Natural, Boardwalk
Difficulty: Easy
Information: This trail meanders through open prairie and scattered oak savanna. During the late spring, summer and fall, the colors and blooms change weekly and buzz with bees and butterflies. Visit in early to mid-June to see the wild lupine at peak bloom.

Woodland Trail

Open Season: Year-round (access by vehicle spring through fall)
Length: 0.5 miles
Location of trail: Trailhead is at mile 5.2 of the Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive
Surface: Natural
Difficulty: Easy
Information: This trail loops through deciduous forest habitat and is a hotspot for warblers and songbirds during spring and fall migrations.

Mahnomen Trail

Trail Length (mi)
3.10
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Beaver Lodge Loop Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.46
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Nelson Pool Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.02
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Black Bear Loop Trail

Trail Length (mi)
1.02
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Overlook Loop Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.20
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The Forks Fishing Access Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.27
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Old School House Loop Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.54
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Santiago Fishing Access Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.48
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CR4 Fishing Access Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.16
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Woodland Trail

Trail Length (mi)
0.47
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Blue Hill Trail

Trail Length (mi)
5.19
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