Route: Minnesota Lowest to Highest (MN)

Submitted by Matthew Matta on Fri, 03/05/2021 - 09:31am
Minnesota, US
21 mi
Vertical Gain
2,200 ft

This route goes from the lowest point in Minnesota (Lake Superior, 600’) to the highest point in Minnesota (Eagle Mountain, 2301’). While Minnesota is not known for its elevation change, Eagle Mountain is the sixth-most isolated peak in the contiguous United States, being over 400 miles from any higher point. Lake Superior is generally considered the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area.

There are at least 10 or 15 different routes you could take, from paved roads and good gravel roads, to beautiful riverside trails and remote logging roads. This route can be anywhere from 18 to 23 miles. Some shorter options will have more snow cover in winter. There are also a limited number of locations where one can access Lake Superior.  Start at the water's edge and take whatever route you think is best - our GPX track shows just 1 possibility.

A free, self-issue permit is required year round for day trips in the Boundary Waters. While there is no view from the summit of Eagle Mountain, there is a beautiful lookout a hundred yards short. This area is spectacular when the leaves change color in September and early October.

GPS Track


On July 4th, 2024, I will be attempting the Minnesota Lowest to Highest FKT open course, out and back. I will be starting sometime around 4am-6am and will be navigating, or try to, the same route Eric Chandler forged on 9-12-21. Will see how this goes with recent storms. FKT or bust…

I failed to added that this will be an Unsupported attempt.

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I've done this. There's never been a set route for this. That said, this isn't the typical route that most people take. Most people take County Road 7 from Grand Marais to Bally Creek Road to get to the Eagle Mountain trailhead. Although there's no "official" starting point, the start has been the boat ramp near the USCG building and not the downtown beach.