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Gateway/Brown’s Creek State Trail

and St. Croix River Crossing Loop

This combination of trails between metropolitan St. Paul and Stillwater is a true getaway as the scenery changes from urban to natural in just a few miles. It’s open to all kinds of non-motorized recreation, even horseback riding on a separated pathway.

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Map of the Gateway/Brown's Creek Trail with the St. Croix River Crossing Loop.

 

Ride choices at Duluth Junction on the Gateway State Trail

Ride choices at Duluth Junction

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Along the Trail

Gateway State Trail

The Gateway is open to biking, hiking, horseback riding, in-line skating and skiing and is wheelchair accessible. The paved trail on the old Soo Line railway grade quickly changes from an urban trail to a rural trail with forests, lakes, wetlands and prairies, with very little development and road noise. It can be busy, especially on weekends. It starts near the State Capitol in St. Paul and travels to Pine Point Park.

Catching a glimpse of nature at 12 miles an hour on the Gateway State Trail

Catching a glimpse of nature at 12 miles an hour

Ride choices at Duluth Junction on the Gateway State Trail

Ride choices at Duluth Junction

Riders enjoy a day trip from Saint Paul to Stillwater on the Browns Creek State Trail

Riders enjoy a day trip from Saint Paul to Stillwater

Ferns line the Browns Creek Trail near Stillwater

Ferns line the Brown’s Creek Trail near Stillwater

Brown’s Creek State Trail

This scenic trail travels from Duluth Junction on the Gateway to the historic Stillwater train depot. On the Brown’s Creek Trail, riders can see a historic stone bridge from the mid-1800s hidden in the woods and several other interpretive displays. At about the halfway point, Brown’s Creek Park provides restrooms and ample parking. Then, riders will descend a canyon to Highway 95. This section of the trail provides views of spectacular fall colors and small waterfalls. The final miles of the Brown’s Creek trail follow the St. Croix River into Stillwater.

Interpretive displays along the Browns Creek State Trail combine biking with learning

Interpretive displays along the Brown’s Creek State Trail combine biking with learning

Historic stone bridge from the 1800s on the Browns Creek State Trail

Historic stone bridge from the 1800s

Kiosks like these provide maps and interpretive displays along the trail on the Browns Creek State Trail

Kiosks like these provide maps and interpretive displays along the trail

Kids stop to enjoy colorful, spinning bike wheel arton the Browns Creek State Trail

Kids stop to enjoy colorful, spinning bike wheel art

Crossing Browns Creek on the Browns Creek State Trail

Crossing Brown’s Creek

Browns Creek is a companion on the six-mile trip from Duluth Junction to Stillwater on the Browns Creek State Trail

Brown’s Creek is a companion on the six-mile trip from Duluth Junction to Stillwater

The Browns Creek Trail enters Stillwater at the historic train depot

The Brown’s Creek Trail enters Stillwater at the historic train depot

St. Croix River Crossing Loop Trail

The paved St. Croix River Crossing Loop takes off at the historic Stillwater train depot, travels through downtown Stillwater and makes a loop across the river into Wisconsin. Riders cross the river on the iconic Stillwater lift bridge which is open only to non-motorized traffic, and the new St. Croix Crossing Bridge, which has separated bike and pedestrian lanes. Lots of scenic views on this section.

Connections

The Gateway State Trail provides access to other trail opportunities in Phalen-Keller Regional Park and the Bruce Vento Trail. An extension of the Gateway north into Taylors Falls is being explored. Besides its connection to the Gateway Trail, the Brown’s Creek Trail connects with the St. Croix River Crossing Loop in Stillwater.

Ride choices at Duluth Junction on the Gateway State Trail

Ride choices at Duluth Junction

 

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