Runcation Idea: Eagle Mountain - Run to the lowest point in MN to the highest point in MN
Run from the lowest point in MN to the highest point in MN the next time you are in northern MN for a running vacation! The run starts along Lake Superior and goes to the top of Eagle Mountain! It is a very accessible route with multiple options as to how to get from Point A to Point B. Here is how we did it:
Start: Park at the Cascade River. There is a parking lot right off of Highway 61.
Total miles: - If you do an out and back, then the whole trip will be 38 miles - If you summit the mountain and then have someone pick you up at the Eagle Mountain trailhead, the total trip will be 22 miles
Total elevation: about 3900ft round trip
Terrain: 7 miles are on hiking trails and 12 miles are on gravel roads.
Logistics - If you choose the out-and-back option, you will need to either drop water ahead of time in a location that will give you access to it twice, or filter water from the Cascade River that parallels the route (easy access at mile 13/25). We suggest filtering water since it took us multiple hours to drop water. - Bugs: When we ran during mid-June, we dealt with deer flies on the gravel roads and mosquitos on the trail (especially near Eagle Mountain). - Time of year: It is recommended to do this runcation between mid-May (depending on snowmelt and trail conditions) and early November. Although, any time of year is fine if you are creative enough!
Directions: Take the hiking trail to Pike Lake Road (about 3.5 miles). Take a left on Pike Lake Road and take that road until you hit Cascade River road (about 4 miles). Take a left onto Cascade River Road and go about 3 miles until you hit Bally Creek Road. Take a left and follow Bally Creek Road until you get to the Eagle Mountain trailhead!