It is no exaggeration to say that Tower, Minnesota is an outdoor recreation paradise. No matter what season, no matter what your favorite outdoor recreation activity is, whether for fun or business, Tower and the surrounding area has everything – we are NOT kidding! Find more information on opportunities to get out and enjoy the great outdoors on these sites:
Mesabi Iron Range Recreation
Vermilion Lake Association
Tower has long been known as a hub for several of Minnesota’s prominent snowmobile trails – The Taconite State Trail, Arrowhead State Trail, Iron Ore Trail all converge in Tower. But you can ride from here to virtually every corner of the State. Join fellow snowmobile enthusiasts in the Vermilion Penguins Snowmobile Club whose mission is to maintain the great quality of snowmobiling in the Lake Vermilion - Tower area. Find more information at:
Vermilion Penquin Snowmobile Club
DNR Interactive Snowmobile Trails
About: The City of Tower/Howard Wagoner Ski Trails provide 12km of beginner to intermediate trails that wind through quiet and beautiful pine, mixed woods, and bog forests. Trails are groomed for classical skiing. The system includes a lighted loop for night skiing. Our trails are groomed and maintained by volunteers and with funding from the MN DNR Cross-Country Ski Grant-in-Aid Program. The Great Minnesota Ski Pass is required to ski and can be purchased online. Trails are not patrolled – use caution and enjoy!
Location & Parking: The trails are just south of the City of Tower and can be accessed from two separate parking areas. North parking is 0.3 miles south of the junction of MN Hwy 1/169 and MN Hwy 135 on south side of road at Trail Kiosk. The South (main) parking is 1.5 mile south of the same junction on MN Hwy 135 on the west side of road (Trails sign & Kiosk).
Support our trails! Join the Wagoner Trail Club for $10 per year or $25 for three years. We also now accept Venmo! Our tag is @howard-wagonertrailsclub. You can also mail payments to: Howard Wagoner Trails Club, PO Box 293, Tower, MN 55790.
Lake Vermilion- Soudan Underground Mine State Park is one of the finest state parks in Minnesota— and one of the newest. The historic underground mine portion provides fascinating tours of the oldest, deepest, richest iron ore mine in Minnesota – almost a half mile underground! And the Lake Vermilion portion added 3,000 acres of beautiful forest and nearly five miles of wild Lake Vermilion shoreline in 2010. The park provides all the amenities for camping, boating, hiking, biking, and snowmobiling. An adjacent state recreation area will soon be home to a new campground designed for OHV enthusiasts. For more information see the Minnesota DNR website.
Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park
Tower is home to a multi-discipline Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Area Office.
Tower Area Fisheries
If you’re looking to walk back in time through a forest primeval, you’ll want to visit the Ancient Cedars Trail, easily accessed just off the Mesabi Trail, a mere five-minute walk from the Tower Civic Center and Historic Train Depot. The two miles of beautiful trails wind through old white cedar and mixed woods, bog forest, and dramatic rock outcrops, providing views of Lake Vermilion. This is a “wilderness-type” trail which means there are roots, rocks, and some steep slippery slopes that require careful walking– we recommend sturdy shoes and a walking stick for those who can use extra help for balance.
The Prospectors Loop Trail System is a new 130-mile ATV trail that connects Ely, Babbitt, Embarrass, Tower, along with Bear Head and Lake Vermilion State Parks. The trail will also tie in with existing trail systems that connect to the North Shore by the Lake County Regional ATV Trail. The trail will be open from Spring when conditions permit till November 1 each year. It will allow both Class 1 and 2 ATVs (single rider or larger side-by-sides), off-highway motorcycles, and some sections will be open for off-road trucks as well as horseback riders. For more information see their website.
Prospector ATV Club
Tower Area may not be widely known as horseback riding country, but in fact, local trails, unpaved roads and abandoned rail beds provide many miles of scenic and easy-going horseback riding opportunities. For more information and advice of local equestrians, check out the website.
Horseback Riding on the Iron Range