Local biking enthusiasts love the greater Mankato area for all it offers to bikers. There are over 50 miles of paved trails nestled in a scenic river valley along with low traffic, wide-shouldered country roads. Find your own route or follow a suggested loop from the Bike and Hike Guide. Each of our biking enthusiasts have chosen their own favorite loop from the Bike and Hike Guide.
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Tell us about your favorite biking loop or your most recent biking experience in greater Mankato. Go>
Meet Our Local Biking Enthusiasts
Charley’s Favorite Loop: My favorite road ride is the Lake Crystal Loop: take the Judson Bottom Road west out of town, go south on County Road 42, then west again on County Road 11, go south on County Road 20 to Lake Crystal. Take County Road 9 east to Rapidan and then take the Red Jacket Trail back to Mankato. It’s about 40 miles round-trip.
“The Greater Mankato Area offers fantastic bicycling opportunities for any cyclist. Mankato features city bike lanes and trails, a county bicycle path, and even a state bike trail – all paved and inviting. There are multiple mountain biking opportunities in the area – like Seven Mile Park, for a more relaxed off-road ride and Mount Kato, for a more technical and challenging ride. Miles of gravel roads surround the edge of town for cross-bike enthusiasts, many of which run along scenic river beds. And finally, for road-bike riders, the Mankato area features some of the best road-riding opportunities in the State. All within minutes of riding out of town, fantastic road routes can be found in every direction: West along the Judson Bottom Road, South to Rapidan up Highway 66 or Cty Rd 33, North to St. Peter on the 3rd Avenue bottom road and East to the backroads of Eagle Lake and St. Clair – you just have to decide how far you want to go! Mankato offers excellent bicycling for everyone – from recreational riders to the extremely experienced riders, there truly is something for every bicycle rider in the Greater Mankato Area.”
Jenna’s Favorite Loop: Of the many routes that I routinely ride my all time favorite is the Courtland Gravel Loop. It is a 60 mile ride with a mix of pavement and gravel.
“The greater Mankato area has some of the best roads for cycling in the country. We are fortunate to have many trails that take you out of town to open roads with low traffic. We have plenty of options for anyone whether it be flat open roads, steep climbs, narrow gravel roads twisting in and out of the river valleys or off road mountain bike trails.”
Tom’s Favorite Loop: Red Jacket/Rapidan/Lake Crystal/Minneopa Loop.
“My favorite ride is the Lake Crystal Loop because it encompasses three trails (Minneopa, South Route, Red Jacket); two waterfalls (Minneopa and Minnimishinoma); the Dam Cafe; the coffee shop in Lake Crystal; four rivers and streams (Minneopa, Blue Earth, Le Sueur and Minnesota); three lakes; country roads; Judson Bottom Road and Sibley Park (360° virtual tour) in Mankato. It’s the long ride for the Mankato River Ramble. All that packed in 45 miles or so of riding. It doesn’t get any better! Anywhere!”
“The Greater Mankato area features a vibrant mountain biking community, and has several trail systems to satisfy one’s need to get off the paved path! Mankato is a river city, and as such provides a mountain biking playground that is as unique as it is beautiful. The local mountain bike club, Mankato Area Mountain Bikers (MAMB), has built two single track trail systems that are specifically designed to be family friendly, while also providing challenges to keep the experienced riders entertained. The Ft. LeHillier Trail is a 2.2 mile single track trail that skirts along the Blue Earth River. The Kiwanis Park trail sits beside the Minnesota River and is currently over five miles in length. Seven Mile Creek Park has over eight miles of multi-use trails that meander through a beautifully forested county park that borders the Minnesota River. Come experience why we are so excited about Greater Mankato mountain biking!”
For more information about the Greater Mankato Bike & Walk Advocates Go>