Construction of a new paved bike trail in Glendalough State Park in northwestern Minnesota in underway, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR). When complete, the trail will consist of an eight-mile loop within the park and a three-mile connection spur to the city of Battle Lake. The trail will pass through woods and prairie and offer views of Annie Battle and Molly Stark lakes.
Portions of the Annie Battle Lake and Lake Emma trails may be closed to hikers and bikers on weekdays during construction. No construction is anticipated on weekends, so trails will remain open on those days. Construction will cease once trails are suitable for cross-country skiing, so groomed trails will not be impacted. Completion of the park portion of the trail is anticipated by late August 2013, although it could be finished as early as June, depending on weather.
The trail is a joint project of the DNR’s Parks and Trails Division, Otter Tail County and the city of Battle Lake. The segment of the trail located within the park – the first to undergo construction – is funded by state bonding dollars and a Federal Recreational Trails Program grant. Construction of the other two trail sections is anticipated to begin in 2013.
If weather is favorable, the contractor hopes to prepare the subgrade level of the trail before the end of December so aggregate can be applied and paving can take place next spring. Some trees will be trimmed or removed to accommodate the trail, which will be 10 feet wide with one-foot shoulders.
The DNR advises anyone visiting the park to follow special instructions posted on signs and to stay off trails that are closed. The main cart-in campground and group camp are not affected by bike trail construction, although the park has blocked reservations at the canoe-in campground for weekdays in the month of May.
A grand opening event is being planned for next summer to celebrate the major addition to the park. For more information, call the park at 218-864-0110.