Summer Guide 2023: Bike Rentals, Tours, and Trails
Let your bike and body be your car this season.
6:24 AM CDT on June 7, 2023
For many Minnesotans, summer is bike season: A time when we eschew cars and buses in lieu of a little two-wheeled travel. The following is our roundup of major trails throughout the metro area for those looking for a car-free road trip.
But first! Do you need to rent a bike? Well, you’re not gonna do it through Nice Ride MN this year, Lyft and the cities left us SOL. But hey, you still have options. Here are a couple businesses renting bikes this summer.
Rent mountain or gravel bikes. Also kinda cool: Rentals go toward your purchasing price if you buy a bike within 90 days. 2900 E. 42nd St., Minneapolis, 612-722-1538; angrycatfishbicycle.com.
Baker Park Reserve
Whether you’re camping here or just want to use the trails, they have bikes you can rent online, as well as child trailers available for rent. 2309 Baker Park Rd., Maple Plain, 763-694-7860; threeriversparks.org.
Capital City Deals Bike Shop
Rent any used bike or e-bike in store by the day or week. 710 Smith Ave S., St. Paul, 651-222-8380; capitaldealsonline.com.
Farmstead Bike Shop
Rent bikes to ride about town or on a short trip. 4001 Bryant Ave. S., Minneapolis, 612-824-9300; farmsteadbikeshop.com/mpls.
Electric assist fat tire and city cruiser e-bike rentals. 1351 Sibley Memorial Hwy., Mendota, 651-925-7328; leetours.us.
Rent random neon green bikes and scooters on the street via the app, which you can download at www.li.me.
Pedego Electric Bikes
Worried about making it up that hill? Just say “fuck it” and turn on that electric bike motor whenever you need it. There are four locations in the Twin Cities metro currently renting bikes: 9719 Valley View Rd., Eden Prairie, 612-827-5000; 1355 Mendota Heights Rd., Mendota Heights, 612-827-5000; 1650 Market Dr., Stillwater, 651-342-0310; 13756 83rd Way N., Maple Grove, 763-777-8606; pedegoelectricbikes.com.
Rent random neon orange bikes and scooters on the street via the app, which you can download at spin.app.
Tangletown Bike Shop
Check this place out if you want to spend a day cruising around the lakes or doing some city biking. Bikes range from comfy cruising bikes to sporty road bikes and hardy mountain bikes. 816 W. 50th St., Minneapolis, 612-259-8180; tangletownbikeshop.com.
Tonka Cycle Ski Board
Rentals include hybrid, fat bikes, and something called “Fullsquish Mountain.” 16 Shady Oak Rd., Hopkins; 952-938-8336; tonkacycleandski.com.
Rent random neon blue motorized bikes and scooters on the street via the app, which you can download at veoride.com/minneapolis. Added bonus: Anyone on public assistance qualifies for discounted monthly rates.
Wheel Fun Rentals
Find tandem and mountain bikes at Bde Maka Ska and Lake Harriet. Or go for those goofy fun surrey bike, deuce coupe, chopper, or quad sport at the Minnehaha Park and Falls, Lake Nokomis, Veterans’ Memorial Park in Richfield, and Lake Como locations. wheelfunrentals.com.
This 1.1-mile trail is described on its site as “gentle.” 9800 Anderson Lakes Lakes Pkwy., Eden Prairie; threeriversparks.org.
Baker Park Reserve
12.5 miles paved over rolling hills, with rest stops and child trailers available for rent. 2309 Baker Park Rd., Maple Plain, 763-694-7860; threeriversparks.org.
Bassett Creek Regional Trail
This 7-mile paved trail will take you to French Regional Park in Plymouth, Theodore Wirth Regional Park, and the Scenic Byway System in Minneapolis with nice stops in Plymouth, New Hope, Crystal, and Golden Valley. threeriversparks.org.
Bde Maka Ska
You can take this popular 3.19 mile paved bike trail around the lake with stop offs in Uptown and St. Louis Park. 3000 Calhoun Pkwy., Minneapolis, 612-230-6400; minneapolisparks.org.
Brown’s Creek State Trail
This 5.9 miles trail can be your BFF, as it connects the Gateway State Trail in the city of Grant to the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, as well as other local park and trail systems. dnr.state.mn.us.
Bryant Lake Regional Park
12.5 miles paved trails, with connection to Minnesota River Bluff LRT Regional trails. 6800 Rowland Rd., Eden Prairie, 763-694-7764; threeriversparks.org.
Carver Park Reserve
Travel through the forest and marshes on 9-miles of paved trails which will also take you to Lowry Nature Center and the Lake Minnetonka Regional Trail. 7400 Grimm Rd. (Lowry Nature Center), Victoria, 763-694-7650; threeriversparks.org.
Cleary Lake Regional Park
This quiet, scenic trail offers 3.5-miles paved road, and connects to Big Woods Regional Trail. 18106 Texas Ave., Prior Lake; threeriversparks.org.
Clifton E. French Regional Park
This paved 4.6-mile trail loops between the visitor center and the beach. The trail also connects to Medicine Lake and Bassett Creek Regional Trails. 12605 Rockford Rd., Plymouth, 763-694-7750; threeriversparks.org.
Crystal Lake Regional Trail
Dakota Rail Regional Trail
This 13.5 paved trail offers Lake Minnetonka views and follows the former Dakota Rail Corridor through St. Bonifacius, Minnetrista, Mound, Spring Park, Minnetonka Beach, Orono, and Wayzata. threeriversparks.org.
Eagle Lake Regional Park
One mile of paved trail, which connects to adjoining municipal trails. 11000 Bass Lake Rd., Plymouth, 763-694-7695; threeriversparks.org.
Elm Creek Park Reserve
20 miles paved and unpaved road, including mountain bike trails through woodlands, wetlands, and farm fields. The trail system is connected to city trails in Maple Grove, Dayton and Champlin, and to the Rush Creek, and Medicine Lake Regional Trails. 12400 James Deane Pkwy., Maple Grove, 763-694-7894; threeriversparks.org.
Fish Lake Regional Park
Three miles of paved trail circles the central hill and continues along marsh and beach area. Trail connects to Medicine Lake Regional Trail. 14900 Bass Lake Rd., Maple Grove, 763-694-7818; threeriversparks.org.
Fort Snelling State Park
5 miles paved, 10 miles mountain bike. 101 Snelling Lake Rd., St. Paul, 612-725-2724; dnr.state.mn.us.
Gateway State Trail
Located on a former Soo Line Railroad grade, this big-ass trail gives you options along its 18-mile route that takes you through St. Paul, Maplewood, North St. Paul, Oakdale, Washington County, and ends at Pine Point Regional Park near Stillwater. dnr.state.mn.us.
Hyland Lake Park Reserve
This 8.6 miles of paved trails wind through woodlands and tall-grass prairie, with a spur to Richardson Nature Center. 10145 Bush Lake Rd., Bloomington, 763-694-7687; threeriversparks.org.
This sweet-ass 2.9 miles paved trail takes you around the lake, with stops at the Rose and Japanese Gardens, beaches, the bandshell, where you’ll often find free movies and music in the summer, and more. 4135 W. Lake Harriet Pkwy., Minneapolis, 612-230-6400; minneapolisparks.org.
Lake Independence Regional Trail
This 15.9-mile trail connects Crow-Hassan Park Reserve, Baker Park Reserve, and the Luce Line State Trail, AND it is 10-feet-wide. Dang! threeriversparks.org.
Lake of the Isles
This trail offers some of the best views in town of posh homes along its 2.76-mile paved trail around the lake. 2500 Lake of the Isles Pkwy. E., Minneapolis, 612-230-6400; minneapolisparks.org.
Lake Minnetonka Regional Park
This 3.2-mile paved trail connects to other community trails. 4610 Cty. Rd. 44, Minnetrista, 763-694-7754; threeriversparks.org.
The Lake Minnetonka Regional Trail
This epic 15.8 miles of aggregate trail runs between Hopkins and Carver Park Reserve, with scenic views of Lake Minnetonka along the way, passing through Minnetonka, Deephaven, Greenwood, Excelsior, Shorewood, and Victoria. threeriversparks.org.
Lake Rebecca Park Reserve
This 8.1 miles of paved trail loops around the entire park reserve. 9831 Rebecca Park Trail, Rockford, 763-694-7860; threeriversparks.org.
Lebanon Hills Regional Park
Nearly 11 miles of mountain bike trails. 860 Cliff Rd., Eagan, 651-554-6530; co.dakota.mn.us.
Luce Line State Trail
This 63-mile former railroad grade features a crushed limestone trail from Plymouth to Winsted for 30 miles, other parts of the trails used by bikes include a paved trail from Winsted to Hutchinson, then crushed granite on to Cedar Mills, and, if you’re really brave, mowed grass on to Cosmos. dnr.state.mn.us.
Medicine Lake Regional Trail
Ride on 20.7 miles of paved trail connecting Bassett Creek and Luce Line Regional Trails, as well as many community trails. threeriversparks.org.
This is the MVP bike trail in town, running 5.5 miles through south Minneapolis. It will get you to Uptown, it will take you to Midtown Global Market, it will take you to the West River Parkway, and it offers lots of other handy exits (though many end on one big hill). The trail runs from Chowen Avenue, runs parallel to Lake Street, ending at West River Parkway. midtowngreenway.org.
Mississippi Gateway Regional Park
Bike over the river on this one-mile path! 10360 W. River Rd., Brooklyn Park. threeriversparks.org.
Minnesota River Bluffs LRT Regional Trail
This 9.2-mile aggregate trail follows an old railroad route from downtown Hopkins to Chanhassen and downtown Chaska. Neat! threeriversparks.org.
Minnesota Valley State Recreational Area
The longest segment starts in Belle Plaine and ends in Shakopee. From Belle Plaine to Gifford Lake it is unpaved (19.5 miles) and from Chaska to Fisher Lake in Shakopee the trail is paved (9.8 miles). The second segment begins at Minnesota Bottoms Landing on the Minnesota River and goes 1.7 miles eastward to Blackdog Lake in Bloomington. dnr.state.mn.us.
Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail
This 15.3-mile paved trail features a mile of wooden boardwalk and connects Hopkins and the Minnesota River Bluffs Regional Trail with Edina, Minnetonka, and Richfield. threeriversparks.org.
Nokomis-Minnesota River Regional Trail
Starting at Lake Nokomis, this 5-mile paved trail connects the Minneapolis Grand Rounds Scenic Byway System with the Minnesota River, passing through Richfield and Bloomington, with many connections to other trails. Yes, including one that will take you to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, you bike nut. threeriversparks.org.
North Cedar Lake Regional Trail
This 4.4-mile paved trail begins in Hopkins and passes through neighborhoods in St. Louis Park before connecting to trails around Cedar Lake in Minneapolis. threeriversparks.org.
North Mississippi Regional Park
1.6 miles of paved trails with views of the Mississippi River and its wooded shoreline. 5700 Lyndale Ave. N., Minneapolis, 763-694-7790; threeriversparks.org.
The Rush Creek Regional Trail
This 9.9-mile paved trail links Elm Creek Park Reserve to Mississippi Gateway Regional Park. threeriversparks.org.
Shingle Creek Regional Trail
This 8.4-mile paved trail traverses parks and wetlands through most of Brooklyn Center, and provides access to Brooklyn Center City Hall/Community Center, the Brookdale Library, and nearby businesses. threeriversparks.org.
South Bloomington Trail Network
Multiple trails both paved and unpaved total more than 16 miles. 7723 Bloomington Ferry Rd., Bloomington, 952-563-8877; bloomingtonmn.gov.
Theodore Wirth Regional Park
1.35 miles of paved trails, connecting to trail along Theodore Wirth Pkwy. 1301 Theodore Wirth Pkwy., Minneapolis, 612-230-6400; minneapolisparks.org.
West Mississippi River Regional Trail
This 10.4-mile paved trail links the communities of North Minneapolis, Brooklyn Center, and Brooklyn Park, and will eventually extend north through Champlain and Dayton and connect to Medicine Lake Regional Trail as well as the Crow River and Wright County. Threeriversparks.org.
More outstate trail options:
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