One of the first rail to trail projects, the 49 mile Heartland Trail starts in Park Rapids, MN and connects up with with the Paul Bunyan Trail 27 miles later near Walker, MN & Leech Lake. The trail then extends up another 22 miles to Cass Lake, MN. It is a great paved trail used by hikers and bikers in the summer and is open to snowmobiling in the winter months and connects to the Minnesota Snowmobile Trail System. The Park Rapids to Walker section of the trail also has a grass/dirt sister trail for use by mountain bikers and horseback riders.
Be sure to get your horse pass before your ride the trail, in the winter months you will need a snowmobile state trail sticker. You can purchase you passes from the DNR Online Licencing System. Access locations can be found in Park Rapids, Dorset, Akeley, Walker, Erickson’s Landing on Leech Lake, Steamboat Landing and in Cass Lake. Rest areas can be found along the trail or in nearby parks in the communities along the trail.