Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge
Mahnomen Trail

Oak Savanna

The Mahnomen Trail is a short easy exploration of an in progress Oak Savannah Restoration. The trail winds through patches of forest and out into prairie clearings. In summer there is a wealth of prairie blossoms, and in the fall the prairie grass turns brassy and gold against the brick red of the oak leaves. In winter it is your classic winter wonderland...

This is a trail best walked in the early spring or late fall as there is a plethora of winged biting things. The Sherburne Wildlife Refuge is a place of beauty that can be explored both on foot and by car, and the Mahnomen Trail is a good place to start.

From the junction of Interstate Highways 169 and 10 south of Elk River Minnesota, head north on 169 14.8 miles to County Rd. 9.
Take the County 9 exit, and at the top turn left and head west 5.1 miles to the Mahnomen Trail parking lot on your left.
Coordinates for the hike: 45.4974740,-93.6851190
Parking / Trailhead amenities
The parking lot is smooth and paved and has room for about 10 cars. There is a clean pit toilet and a map board with brochures and trail guides adjacent to the parking lot.
Trail observations
The trail exits directly from the parking lot near the toilets. The trail is a nearly flat 3 mile loop. The trail is grassy and generally wide enough for two to walk side by side. This is a very easy hike, with plenty of benches and map signs at every junction.
Trail statistics
The trail is 2.99 miles long. The sum of all the uphill climbs is 78 feet.
Trail waypoints
0.01 miParking Parking lot
0.07 miTrailhead Trailhead
0.08 miGo rightBranch - go right
0.27 miBenchBench
0.72 miStay rightBranch - go right
0.96 miBenchBench
0.98 miKeep rightBranch - stay right
1.31 miBenchSign,Bench
1.61 miLake benchBench overlooking lake
2.04 miGo straightIntersection - go straight
2.09 miStay rightBranch - stay right
2.13 miTrail to benchSide trail to bench
2.25 miGo rightBranch - stay right
2.73 miBenchBench
2.99 miTrail endTrail end
Trail map - Mahnomen Trail
Altitude chart - Mahnomen Trail Trailhead Go right Bench Keep right Lake bench Go straight Trail to bench Bench Trail end
Difficulty: Easy
Terrain : Flat
Trail surface: Grassy
Type: Loop
View: Open
View: Wooded
County: Sherburne
State: Minnesota
Country: United States of America
Friends of Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge Blog - this is a cool site!
Fish and Wildlife Service site
Refuge map
Printable trail map in PDF format (27 Mb download)
Printable trail map in PNG format (4 Mb download)
Waypoints in CSV format
Waypoints in KML format
Instructions on using a trail description page
Instructions on using a trail map printout
Trails in the surrounding area
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Trailheads for Iowa Minnesota, and Wisconsin (7 additional trails)