ST. ANTHONY FALLS HERITAGE TRAiL | MINNEAPOLIS, MN
St. Anthony Falls Heritage Trail | Minneapolis, MN
Website: http://npshistory.com/brochures/miss/saint-anthony-falls-heritage-trail.pdf Know Before You Go: Parking can be difficult during some parts of the year, but public transportation can also get you near the starting points of this trail. Length: 2 miles of paved and unpaved trails, not including spurs to see historic sites. Time: This took us around an hour to walk. Difficulty: Easy Terrain: Paved Bike Trail, crushed aggregate, dirt, rock. Dog-Friendly: Yes Kid-Friendly: Yes
Located near downtown Minneapolis on the riverfront of the Mississippi River, this loop trail around the Minneapolis riverfront is a favorite for tourists, bicyclists, runners, and walkers - for good reason. It shows you a lot of history in only two miles. You can start on either the Minneapolis or the St. Paul side of the river at one of many different public parking lots. We like to start in at the parking lot at the intersection of Portland Avenue and the river on the Minneapolis side of the Mississippi River.
The St. Anthony Falls Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places, and the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area is part of the National Park Service, so there are plenty of historical markers as you walk the route.
On the Minneapolis side of the river, you see remnants of the city’s beginnings as the flour-milling capital of the nation in the late 1880s and beginning 1930s. Flour companies - including Gold Medal and Pillsbury - used the waterpower of the falls and the natural resources of Minnesota wheat farmers. Other companies such as General Mills also depended on these resources.
As you cross the river, you see the Falls of St. Anthony, the only major waterfall on the Mississippi River.
As you walk, you can see points that tell the story of St. Paul’s start in the 1840s at the head of steamboat navigation on the Mississippi. St. Paul became the territorial capital of Minnesota in 1849, and the state capital in 1858. There are several places to stop and shop or eat lunch, including the historic Nicollet Island with the inn that is a fantastic place for brunch!