Updated: Mar 4, 2020
Cuyuna Minnesota is a made for families that love outdoor adventure and learning about fascinating history. The Cuyuna Recreation Area has some of the clearest lakes in the state and the hiking and biking trails are breathtaking. The area mining history museums and points of interest will engage all ages. We've compiled a list of great family activities when you are visiting the Cuyuna Recreation Area or Minnesota.
10. Minnesota Mining History Lesson - The Soo Line Depot Museum. Joel Lena from San Francisco says this local, free admission museum is definitely worth a stop. It is a museum of the local mining activities as well as many artifacts of Americana. Kids will get a kick out of seeing original snowmobiles, birch bark canoes and 1920 era home appliances. The volunteers are knowledgeable and enthusiastic. A great stop. (101 1st Street NE, 218-546-6178) in Crosby. Soo Line Depot Museum is open from Memorial Day Weekend to Labor Day Weekend from Tuesday to Saturday, 10:00 AM to 4:00PM. Link to website Photo credit: Soo Line Depot Museum
9. Picking Fresh Strawberries - Elm Island Lake Berry Farm is family owned and is about 20 miles from Cuyuna. Pick your own strawberries on small fields surrounded by woods and natural hay fields. Picking usually begins the last week of June. Address: 36854 Deer St, Aitkin, MN 56431. Phone: (218) 927-3087 Link to website
8. Lookout Mountain - From the DNR's website: The overlook at Miner's Mountain is the tallest point in the recreation area. It was created by miners, one dump truck at a time, disposing of glacial till and low grade ore. Mountain bike trails cover most of this beautiful hill. There is also a road leading to the top, making it one of the most accessible overlooks in the area. Huntington Mine Lake is in the foreground and is 258 feet deep. This is a great location for observing sunrises, sunsets, star gazing, changing weather conditions, or just catching a cool breeze. Link to website
7. Mini Golf at Traditions at Cuyuna Falls - This is a top 5 Mini Golf Course in Minnesota. It features a waterfall, fountain ponds, bridges, breath taking landscape and music plays throughout the entire course! It also has batting cages and water wars game. Traditions Mini Golf (24228 State Highway 210, 218-534-9250) in Deerwood. Open daily summer. Link to website
6. The Croft Mine Park and Museum is an area favorite. The info on the museum and the mine
tour is incredible. The guides really know their stuff and full of fun facts! This 17-acre park, built on the Croft Mine site, was an active underground iron ore mine from 1916-1934; original shaft 630 ft. deep; enjoy guided simulated underground mining tour; museum has mining artifacts. Croft Mine Park and Museum (N 8th St & 2nd Ave E, 218-546-5466) in Crosby. Open Sat. & Sun. 10am to 6pm starting Memorial Day Weekend. Link to website
5. Paul Bunyan Land - – A quick 20 minute drive will get you to see the real 26 ft. Paul Bunyan. Paul Bunyan Land is an amusement park that offers several recreational and entertainment services for kids and adults. It has several rides, including roller coaster, marry-go-round, apple ride and flying cage. Best of all, Paul will magically say your name. Paul Bunyan Land (17553 State Highway 18, 218-764-2524) in Brainerd. Open daily summer.
4. Cuyuna Lanes - Bowling at Cuyuna Lanes is a fun for all ages. Its located on Crosby Main Street 218 W Main St Crosby, Minnesota. Call (218) 546-5027 for current business hours.
3. Milford Mine Memorial Park - This park memorializes o the 41 miners who lost their lives at this location on February 5, 1924. This park site is a "must see" on the Cuyuna Range. There are multiple walkways and beautiful signs. The boardwalk over the water leads you to the shaft where the survivors made their escape. Here's a link to driving directions Credit: Cuyuna Heritage Network.
2. Paddling Mine Lakes - This is one of the best paddling destinations in Minnesota and it's only two hours from the Twin Cities. Stand up paddle boarding is particularly appealing in Cuyuna. This is because the lake holds pure and crystal waters. You can see down in the water for almost 40 feet. This amazing view will let you see the life underneath the surface. One of the best things of stand up paddle boarding is to watch the sights. In Cuyuna you are getting not just the sights of your surroundings, but also the sights of beneath the surface. Always wear life jackets because the mine lakes are deep. Here's a link to local outfitters offering paddle boards, kayaks and canoes. Photo credit: Lowlight Images
1. Riding Bobsled - Riding this trail will bring back memories of watching bobsled competitions in the Olympics. It's a tree-lined trail with turn and plenty of berms. It's sure to put a smile on anyone's face and we bet you'll want to ride it more than once. Bike rental information is available at this link. Trail maps are available at this link.