Northwestern Minnesota

Routes and Scenic Byways

Please open our routes/trails map for a regional look at all the routes listed below.

Waters of the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway

  • Waters of the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway  - Stretches 191 miles across the far north/northwest portion of Minnesota. 

  • State parks along the route include Lake Bronson on the western end, Hayes Lake, Zippel Bay and Franz Jevne.

  • As the routes name suggests, this far northern byway offers nighttime visitors an excellent chance of seeing the magnificent Aurora Borealis, better known as Northern Lights.

  • Information is also available at

  • Note:  The NWRDC created the Land of the Dancing Sky logo to complement this effort.    

King of Trails Scenic Byway

  • Stretching from the Gulf of Mexico and north to Canada, Highway 75 was dubbed the King of Trails 90 years ago.  The Minnesota portion, King of Trails Scenic Byway, stretches 414 miles along the western border.

  • One of the attractions of this byway is the lack of tourist spots. The byway travels through small farming communities, expansive grain fields, wide grasslands, and picturesque state parks.

  • Information is also available at

Pine to Prairie Birding Trail

  • This group has a wonderful web site at that you must check out.  It contains birding information, maps, and contact information.

  • The trail goes from Warroad to Greenbush on Hwy 11 then south on Hwy 59 to Fergus Falls, Minnesota.

Minnesota Wildflower Route

  • From Greenbush to Baudette across the north part of Minnesota along Highway 11.  This route is a smaller section of the Waters of the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway.

  • This route features Minnesota's protected state flower the Lady Slipper. 

  • It complements other efforts including the National Prairie Passage Route listed below.

  • Each year a festival occurs related to the route  

Prairie Passage

Map of Prairie Passage showing how the route travels near I-35 from the Mexican border through Texas, Oklahoma,  Kansas, Missouri, and, Iowa. The route then travels near I-90 in Minnesota, heading  to the western edge of the state and then up to the northern border in a somewhat zig-zag pattern.


Red Lake River Corridor

  • The Red Lake River Corridor web site has information about trip planning, activities, maps and much more.

  • The Red Lake River is one of a few state canoe routes in Northwest Minnesota.  It flows west from the Upper/Lower Red Lake to the Red River in East Grand Forks.

  • Official DNR Information

MOM's Way

  • For centuries Native peoples and the "Coureur des Bois" paddled the historic boundary waters of this east-west route joining Lake Superior to the western prairies. Today you can explore the beauty and wonder of the original route on good roads linking southeastern Manitoba, northern Minnesota, and northwestern Ontario with Lake Superior.

  • Consists of over 400 miles of paved roads (Highways 11 and 12) in two countries.

  • Includes the city of Warroad in Northwest Minnesota as well as Baudette, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, Rainy River, Steinbach, Sprague, Fort Frances and Atikokan.

  • Detailed information can be found at 








This site is created and published by the Northwest Regional Development Commission.

If you have questions or comments on this site, please contact Jennifer ( staff list).
NWRDC  115 South Main, Warren, MN  56762   218-745-6733