Bike and trail enthusiasts – check out this article from Minnesota Trails Magazine – a blog about a 38-mile bike trip between Sleepy Eye and New Ulm. The Starkeller and other attractions in and around New Ulm are written about in this article! Jan, publisher of Minnesota Trails Magazine, talks about the route they took and some of the things they saw along the way. Starting in Sleepy Eye and taking gravel roads to reach New Ulm, she mentions Essig, the Milford Monument, the graffiti wall, the Starkeller, and then heads back to Sleepy Eye via Highway 14 for a nice ride along the lake.
New Ulm and the surrounding area is a beautiful place for riding bike and walking trails. To explore more of the wonders of what the outskirts of New Ulm have to offer, you could also bike to/from Sleepy Eye via County Road 21 and Highway 4. Especially during the fall season that is soon approaching, take in all the beautiful views of the Minnesota River Valley! A not so popular road, country road 21 is also where you will find the old Harkin Store; an authentic 1871 General Store. Picture going in for groceries and supplies, while others sit on the porch overlooking the river while they exchange town news and gossip. This area was once West Newton, where the river was used by steam boats bringing/shipping supplies.
Once you reach Highway 4, you can go left and cross the river and continue on towards Sleepy Eye, you could go right and explore the small town of Fairfax, or you can continue straight for just a few curves more to find another piece of history that is Fort Ridgely State Park! This State Park is also a popular horse trail gem! Complete with a campground, horse campground, trails to hike and a creek for the kids to frolic and splash in! Just past the campground part of Fort Ridgely, explore the ruins of the once thriving military outpost that was built in 1853 to keep peace as American settlers poured into the former Dakota lands. The fort withstood several attacks in the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862 and became a training ground for Civil War recruits. The stone foundations of the other fort buildings remain and interpretive markers tell the fort’s story, while the restored commissary building houses interpretive exhibits.
Start planning your bike or hike around the New Ulm and Minnesota River Valley area today! Minnesota Trails is a quarterly outdoor magazine that features Minnesota Parks, trails and rivers! We’re honored the beauty of the New Ulm area and hospitality of local businesses was mentioned in such a fun and active magazine promoting Minnesota’s beauty! Here is Jan’s full article – Trail Pairings: Southern Minnesota Gravel.