Shingobee NRT Trail In Minnesota

Here is everything you need to know about the Shingobee NRT Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Minnesota
  • Length: 6 miles.
  • Type: Hiking.
  • Surface: gravel
  • Managed By: U.S. Forest Service
  • Permit Required?: Yes
  • Website: Info not available.

The Shingobee NRT Trail, located in the Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota, holds a rich historical significance. The trail follows the path of an ancient Native American trade route that connected the Mississippi River to the Red River of the North. This historic trail was used by the Ojibwe people for centuries as they traveled through the dense forests and across the vast wetlands of the region.

The Ojibwe, also known as the Chippewa, relied on this trail for trade, communication, and cultural exchange with neighboring tribes. They would traverse the trail on foot or by canoe, carrying furs, wild rice, and other goods to trade with other tribes or European settlers. The trail played a crucial role in connecting different Ojibwe communities and facilitating the exchange of ideas, traditions, and resources.

With the arrival of European settlers in the 19th century, the Shingobee NRT Trail gained further importance as a transportation route. Traders, loggers, and pioneers utilized the trail to access the vast timber resources of the region. The trail became a lifeline for the logging industry, as it provided a means to transport logs from the forests to the sawmills and markets. The logging boom brought significant changes to the landscape, as vast areas of forest were cleared to meet the growing demand for timber.

Today, the Shingobee NRT Trail stands as a testament to the rich history of the region. Hikers and outdoor enthusiasts can explore this historic route, immersing themselves in the footsteps of the Ojibwe people and the pioneers who shaped the area. The trail offers a glimpse into the past, allowing visitors to appreciate the cultural and historical significance of this ancient trade route.

While On The Trail

Access Points

1. Shingobee Recreation Area: This is the main access point for the Shingobee NRT Trail. It is located off County Road 50 and offers parking, restrooms, and picnic areas.

2. Shingobee Hills Recreation Area: This access point is located off County Road 50, just south of the Shingobee Recreation Area. It provides parking and access to the trail.

3. Shingobee River Bridge: This access point is located along County Road 50, where the trail crosses the Shingobee River. There is limited parking available.

4. Shingobee Lake: This access point is located off County Road 50, near the northern end of the trail. It offers parking and access to the trail.

5. Shingobee River State Forest Campground: This access point is located within the Shingobee River State Forest. It provides camping facilities and access to the trail.

6. Shingobee Hills Overlook: This access point is located off County Road 50, near the southern end of the trail. It offers parking and a scenic overlook of the surrounding area.

7. Shingobee Snowmobile Trailhead: This access point is located off County Road 50, near the Shingobee Recreation Area. It provides parking and access to the snowmobile trail, which intersects with the Shingobee NRT Trail.

Please note that these access points may have different names or designations depending on the source or map you are referring to. It is always recommended to check with local authorities or trail organizations for the most up-to-date information on access points and trailheads.

Transportation Available

1. Shingobee NRT Trailhead Parking Lot – Convenient parking area for trail users.
2. Shingobee River Shuttle – Shuttle service for transportation along the Shingobee River.
3. Shingobee Cab Company – Local taxi service for transportation needs in the area.
4. Shingobee Bike Rentals – Bike rental service for exploring the trail and surrounding areas.
5. Shingobee Trail Bus – Bus service providing transportation to and from the Shingobee NRT Trail.
6. Shingobee Trailhead Bike Rack – Bike rack available for secure parking at the trailhead.
7. Shingobee Trailhead Carpool Lot – Carpool lot for sharing rides and reducing traffic to the trailhead.
8. Shingobee Trailhead Shuttle – Shuttle service offering transportation to and from the Shingobee NRT Trailhead.


The amenities available at the Shingobee NRT Trail may vary, but here are some common amenities that can be found at similar nature trails:

1. Restrooms: Public restrooms or portable toilets may be available at designated areas along the trail.

2. Parking: Parking lots or designated parking areas may be provided for visitors to park their vehicles.

3. Camping Sites: Some nature trails offer designated camping sites where visitors can set up tents or campers for overnight stays. However, it is advisable to check with the trail management or local authorities for specific camping regulations.

4. Picnic Areas: Picnic tables, benches, or designated areas for picnicking may be available along the trail. Visitors can enjoy meals or snacks while taking in the natural surroundings.

5. Trailhead Facilities: At the trailhead, there may be information kiosks, maps, and signage to provide visitors with trail information and safety guidelines.

6. Interpretive Signs: Along the trail, interpretive signs may be placed to provide information about the local flora, fauna, geology, or history of the area.

7. Benches and Rest Areas: Benches or rest areas may be scattered along the trail, providing visitors with places to rest, relax, or enjoy the scenery.

8. Drinking Water Stations: Some trails have drinking water stations or fountains where visitors can refill their water bottles.

9. Trash Receptacles: To maintain cleanliness, trash receptacles may be placed at regular intervals along the trail for visitors to dispose of their waste properly.

10. Accessibility Features: Depending on the trail’s accessibility, amenities such as wheelchair-accessible paths, ramps, or facilities may be available.

It is recommended to check with the Shingobee NRT Trail management or local authorities for the specific amenities available at the trail.

Nearby Services

1. Shingobee Hills Campground – A nearby campground offering tent and RV sites for outdoor enthusiasts.
2. Shingobee Recreation Area – A scenic area with picnic spots and restroom facilities.
3. Shingobee Island – A small island with a picnic area accessible by a footbridge.
4. Shingobee River – A river running through the trail, providing opportunities for fishing and water activities.
5. Shingobee Hills Motel – A motel offering comfortable accommodations for visitors.
6. Shingobee Chalet – A cozy chalet with rustic charm, perfect for a weekend getaway.
7. Shingobee Diner – A local diner serving delicious comfort food and homemade pies.
8. Shingobee Grocery Store – A convenient store offering groceries and basic supplies.
9. Shingobee Emergency Medical Services – A nearby medical facility providing emergency medical care.
10. Shingobee Fire Department – A local fire department offering emergency response services.

Shingobee NRT Trail Difficulty Notes

The Shingobee NRT Trail offers a moderate level of difficulty, making it suitable for hikers of various skill levels. The trail spans approximately 23 miles and winds through the beautiful Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota. While the terrain is generally flat, there are some sections that feature gentle inclines and uneven surfaces, adding a bit of challenge to the hike. Additionally, the trail can be muddy and wet in certain areas, especially after rainfall, requiring hikers to navigate carefully. Overall, the Shingobee NRT Trail provides a rewarding and enjoyable hiking experience that is accessible to both beginners and more experienced hikers.

Features And Attractions

The Shingobee NRT Trail is a scenic trail located in Minnesota. Along the trail, you can find various scenic views, historical sites, natural landmarks, and more. Here are some notable points of interest along the Shingobee NRT Trail:

1. Shingobee River: The trail follows the beautiful Shingobee River, offering scenic views of the river and its surrounding landscapes.

2. Shingobee Hills: As you hike along the trail, you’ll encounter the Shingobee Hills, which provide stunning panoramic views of the surrounding area.

3. Shingobee Recreation Area: This recreation area is located near the trail and offers camping, picnicking, and other outdoor activities.

4. Shingobee Lake: The trail passes by Shingobee Lake, a picturesque lake where you can enjoy fishing, boating, or simply relax by the water.

5. Historic Logging Sites: The Shingobee NRT Trail passes through areas that were once heavily logged. You can find remnants of old logging camps and equipment, providing a glimpse into the region’s logging history.

6. Wildlife Viewing: The trail offers opportunities for wildlife viewing, including deer, birds, and other native species. Keep an eye out for wildlife as you hike along the trail.

7. Forested Landscapes: The trail takes you through dense forests, allowing you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the area. Enjoy the peacefulness and serenity of the forested landscapes.

8. Wildflowers and Plant Life: During the spring and summer months, the trail is adorned with vibrant wildflowers and diverse plant life. Take the time to appreciate the colorful blooms and unique vegetation.

9. Scenic Overlooks: Along the trail, you’ll come across scenic overlooks that provide breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. These overlooks are perfect for capturing memorable photos.

10. Picnic Areas: The trail features designated picnic areas where you can take a break, enjoy a meal, and soak in the natural surroundings.

Remember to check trail maps and guides for specific locations and points of interest along the Shingobee NRT Trail.

Usage Guidelines

– Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.
– Clean up after your pets and dispose of waste properly.
– Bicycles are allowed on the trail, but must yield to pedestrians.
– Motorized vehicles are not permitted on the trail.
– Hunting or trapping is prohibited.
– Camping or overnight stays are not allowed.
– Fires and fireworks are not permitted.
– Littering is strictly prohibited.
– Respect wildlife and do not disturb their habitats.
– Stay on designated trails and do not create new paths.
– Do not remove or damage any plants, rocks, or other natural features.
– Fishing is allowed in designated areas only and requires a valid fishing license.
– Swimming or wading in the trail’s water bodies is not allowed.
– Respect seasonal restrictions, such as closures during hunting seasons or extreme weather conditions.

Seasonal Information

The Shingobee NRT Trail, located in the beautiful Chippewa National Forest in Minnesota, offers visitors a stunning outdoor experience throughout the year. The best times to visit the trail depend on personal preferences and the activities one wishes to engage in. However, the trail truly shines during the spring and fall seasons.

In the spring, the Shingobee NRT Trail comes alive with vibrant colors as wildflowers bloom and the forest awakens from its winter slumber. The temperatures are mild, making it perfect for hiking, birdwatching, and enjoying the peacefulness of nature. The trail offers breathtaking views of the Shingobee River and its surrounding wetlands, which are teeming with wildlife during this time of year. It’s also a great time to spot migratory birds as they make their way back north.

During the fall, the Shingobee NRT Trail transforms into a picturesque wonderland as the leaves change into a kaleidoscope of reds, oranges, and yellows. The crisp air and cooler temperatures make hiking even more enjoyable, and the trail offers stunning vistas of the surrounding forest. Fall is also an excellent time for fishing in the Shingobee River, as the water is clear and the fish are active before winter sets in.

It’s important to note that the Shingobee NRT Trail has seasonal closures to protect the natural environment and ensure visitor safety. The trail is typically closed during the winter months due to heavy snowfall and icy conditions, which can make it hazardous for hikers. It’s best to check with the Chippewa National Forest or local authorities for the exact closure dates and any other trail updates before planning a visit.

Overall, the Shingobee NRT Trail offers a unique and memorable experience throughout the year. Whether you prefer the vibrant colors of spring or the stunning foliage of fall, this trail is a must-visit destination for nature enthusiasts seeking tranquility and natural beauty.


1. Wheelchair Accessible Trailhead: The trailhead of Shingobee NRT Trail is designed to be accessible for wheelchair users, providing a smooth and level surface for easy access.
2. Paved Pathways: The trail features paved pathways, allowing individuals using wheelchairs or mobility aids to navigate the trail comfortably.
3. Accessible Restrooms: ADA-compliant restrooms are available along the trail, ensuring wheelchair users have accessible facilities.
4. Rest Areas with Benches: The trail includes rest areas with benches, providing a place for individuals with mobility challenges to take a break and enjoy the surroundings.
5. Accessible Picnic Areas: Picnic areas along the trail are designed to be wheelchair accessible, allowing everyone to enjoy outdoor dining experiences.
6. Signage with Braille: Trail signage includes Braille, enabling visually impaired individuals to access important information about the trail.
7. Accessible Parking Spaces: Designated accessible parking spaces are available near the trailhead, ensuring convenient access for individuals with disabilities.
8. Trail Width: The trail is wide enough to accommodate wheelchairs and mobility aids, allowing for safe and comfortable passage.
9. Accessible Viewing Areas: Scenic viewpoints along the trail are designed to be accessible, providing wheelchair users with the opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty.
10. Assistance Animals: The trail welcomes assistance animals, allowing individuals with disabilities to have their service animals accompany them on the trail.

Safety Information

When visiting the Shingobee NRT Trail, it is important to keep the following safety information in mind:

1. Trail Conditions: Be aware of the current trail conditions before starting your hike. Check for any closures, weather alerts, or potential hazards. It is advisable to contact the local park authorities or visitor center for up-to-date information.

2. Hiking Preparedness: Always be prepared for your hike. Carry essential items such as a map, compass, first aid kit, extra clothing layers, sufficient water, and snacks. Familiarize yourself with the trail route and let someone know about your plans.

3. Wildlife Awareness: The Shingobee NRT Trail is located in a natural environment, so be aware of the potential presence of wildlife. Respect their habitat and keep a safe distance. Do not feed or approach any animals you encounter.

4. Tick and Mosquito Prevention: The trail passes through wooded areas, which may have ticks and mosquitoes. Wear long sleeves, long pants, and use insect repellent to minimize exposure. After your hike, thoroughly check for ticks and remove them promptly.

5. Sun Protection: Protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays by wearing sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses. Consider hiking during early morning or late afternoon to avoid the peak sun hours.

6. Hydration: Stay hydrated throughout your hike by carrying an adequate amount of water. Dehydration can lead to fatigue and other health issues. Drink water regularly, even if you don’t feel thirsty.

7. Trail Etiquette: Respect other hikers and trail users by following proper trail etiquette. Yield to uphill hikers, keep noise levels to a minimum, and stay on designated trails to avoid damaging the surrounding environment.

8. Emergency Situations: In case of an emergency, call the appropriate emergency services and provide them with your location. It is crucial to have a means of communication, such as a fully charged cell phone or a two-way radio.

9. Weather Awareness: Keep an eye on the weather forecast before heading out. Be prepared for sudden changes in weather conditions and adjust your plans accordingly. Seek shelter if thunderstorms or severe weather are approaching.

10. Leave No Trace: Practice Leave No Trace principles by leaving the trail as you found it. Pack out all trash, dispose of waste properly, and respect the natural surroundings. Leave the area undisturbed for future visitors to enjoy.

Remember, safety should always be a priority when exploring any trail. By being prepared, aware of your surroundings, and respecting the environment, you can have a safe and enjoyable experience on the Shingobee NRT Trail.

Conservation Notes

The Shingobee NRT Trail is a conservation area that is managed and protected to preserve its natural resources and biodiversity. The trail is located in the Shingobee River Valley in Minnesota and covers a significant area of diverse ecosystems, including forests, wetlands, and prairies. The conservation status of the Shingobee NRT Trail is considered to be in good condition, thanks to the efforts of conservation organizations and land managers.

One of the primary goals of the conservation efforts in the Shingobee NRT Trail is to maintain and enhance the habitat for a variety of plant and animal species. The trail provides a home to numerous species of birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians. It is particularly important for the conservation of several rare and threatened species, including the eastern massasauga rattlesnake and the Blanding’s turtle. The conservation status of the trail ensures that these species and their habitats are protected from human disturbances and other threats.

In addition to protecting wildlife, the conservation status of the Shingobee NRT Trail also focuses on preserving the integrity of the surrounding ecosystems. The trail is managed to prevent soil erosion, maintain water quality, and promote the growth of native vegetation. This includes implementing measures to control invasive species and restore degraded areas. By maintaining the health of the ecosystems, the conservation status of the trail ensures the long-term sustainability of the natural resources and the overall ecological balance of the area.

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