I love riding in Minneapolis because of the number of lakes and their park and trail infrastructure. The Chain of Lakes District
of the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway containing Lake Harriet, Lake Calhoun,
Lake of the Isles and Cedar Lake is a very popular destination for
cyclists, skaters, joggers and walkers. There are separate and combined
paths for bike and pedestrian traffic to accommodate the volume of use
these trails get. This is one of my favorite spots to ride for
connecting to other trails in the area, people watching and the one-way
paths around the lakes. If you've never ridden the Chain of Lakes, it's
a great way to see why they call Minneapolis the "City of Lakes".
One of the routes I find myself doing again and again is a round trip ride from Lake Nokomis to the northern tip of Lake of the Isles and back. It's a ride that not only provides some
great scenery, but also some mileage. I enjoy this one because it has views of the city skyline from
many vantage points and connects the Chain of Lakes with Nikomis via the smooth paved path running through woods
along Minnehaha Creek.
Lake Nokomis is located in the Minnehaha District of the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway. This park has ample parking and is where I usually start many rides. I like to park on the North end of the lake where I can start by riding east around Lake Nokomis and after a lap I head west following the Minnehaha Creek to the Lake Harriet Parkway and the Chain of Lakes. Around Lake Nokomis, the Chain of Lakes and back makes for a 20+ mile ride. Map of route
Minneapolis' trails show off why it has been ranked as one of the best cycling cities in the country, so take advantage of all the City of Lakes has to offer for your next ride.