Tag Archives: off-road cycling adventure

A Minnesota true north adventure for family and group fun

by Russ Lowthian at haveFunBiking.com

With the promise of vaccines and a chance of normalcy in our near future, I would like to share a Minnesota true north adventure perfect for the whole family. A remote bike or hike experience that will be remembered for years to come. Plus, you will soon see some other fun stories of outdoor activities in both the HaveFunBiking and Let’s Do MN blogs and directory in the coming months. As the editor of both the Minnesota Bike/Hike Guide and Let’s Do MN, we will also be coving the 75th anniversary of Many Point Scout Camp that is being planned.

A true north adventure in the Beltrami Island State Forest.

With thousands of miles of paved trails and hundreds of mountain biking areas in Minnesota. You will find maps and other activities in our guides to help you pick a destination for a safe and memorable time, like our true north adventure here.

A fun bike/camp true north adventure

If you are looking for the ultimate off-the-grid bike/camping experience, a favorite of mine is a trip to Beltrami Island State Forest, near Roseau, MN. For this adventure, plan your stay for three or more days to make the trip worth the effort. Located about 10 miles from the Canadian Border, wildlife enthusiasts will find five rivers with their headwaters beginning here in the forest.

Wildlife viewing in its prime with five different rivers leading out of Beltrami Island State Forest.

With off-road cycling and hiking equipment, visitors can explore a network of low maintenance roads and trails. The forest covers over 138 miles, with some primitive campsites along the way (see map). Plus several scientific and natural areas for observation or study. A place to help a Boy Scout fulfill his merit badge requirement or just a spot to dwell further into nature?

One of many homesteads and settlements of the past you will pass on your true north adventure.

While in the forest, enjoy a mixed terrain of low flatlands, peat bogs, and ridges covered in pines full of flora and fauna sightings. You might even find evidence of a former homestead or village along the forest roads. And, when in season, stop and enjoy some blueberries. Then in the evening, sitting around the campfire, look up to the skies. On a clear night, gaze at the constellations and northern lights for another true north experience.

A great place to start this adventure is Roseau, MN. The town is 12 miles away from Beltrami Forest. See more on this destination in a recent article at HaveFunBiking.com.

A memorable place for a true north family or group outing.

Then, please check back periodically to LetsDoMN.com for more ideas of outdoor activity we will be covering. Some of the topics scheduled over the next few months include birding, fishing, hiking, and paddling adventures you may find of interest. So stay safe, keep your social distance and watch for more fun outdoor adventures to consider from us in 2021!

This bike pic Saturday, enjoy your time out riding the trails with family and friends as the fall colors are at there peak.

A healthy energy boost makes any off-road cycling adventure better

by Russ Lowthian, HaveFunBiking.com

If you are like me, I like to carry a few energy boost jell packs while enjoying nature in the wild. On my latest adventure, before the snow covered the Northwoods landscape, I found Trail Butter. Trying them I found they were delicious and provided a level of energy that lasted longer. Plus, having several flavors added to the experience and fun of mountain biking in the true north.

Trail Butter flavors in the 1.15 oz. packets for an energy boost.

A natural energy boost source while off-road biking in the true north

Wanting to get one more bike adventure in before snowfall in the upper Midwest, I spent four days exploring the Beltrami Island State Forest, near Roseau, MN. A mammoth forest covering more than 700,000 acres it’s about 30 miles south of the Canadian border. With Roseau several miles away I wanted to maximize my time and the weight of what I carried along. Using a couple of primitive campsites along the 140-miles of logging roads and trail loops the Trail Butter packets fit my needs well. Each day,

The 4.5oz size was my choice on my recent Northwoods trip.

I averaged about 30-miles of mountain biking from the established base camp for that section of the State Forest. Every five or six miles I stopped and enjoyed a single-size serving size of the Trail Butter. Stopping periodically for an energy boost of this nut butter made it easy to complete the planned route in plenty of time before dark.

With Trail Butter no gooey aftertaste

As I have found with some of the other energy products on the market, with Nut Butter there was no pasty after taste. I also found the company’s claim on its website description, as “slow-burning” and this was also true. The almond component of the nut butter mix offers a ready source of fat that burns slowly, perfect for any outdoor activity. Not like some of the other energy products I have tried, full of high fructose corn syrup or other sugar that doesn’t sustain you for very long.

Offered in four flavors and three different sizes

A 16oz jar of Trail Butter works well back to base camp or at home.

The Trail Butter packaging comes in three different styles and to date come in four flavors, with their Spiced Chai Seasonal Nut Butter Blend. Their regular flavors include the Original Nut Butter Blend; Maple & Sea Salt Blend; and the Dark Chocolate & Coffee Nut Butter Blend. Like the Original flavor, which is an almond nut base with chocolate and cranberries, you will find 680 calories to turn into energy in every single serving. Sizes include:

  • The single-serving 1.15oz packets that are easy to open and resemble the packaging of a typical gel. This size works well when disposing of the packaging isn’t an issue.
  • The 4.5oz size was my choice on my recent trip. It gave me several servings in one reseal-able, easy to eat out of the pouch. I just had to decide which flavor I wanted to carry each day.
  • Also available in 16oz jars. This size works well for those who are able to make it back to base camp or at home to prepare a sandwich.

Made in the U.S., Trail Butter is manufactured by a small company out of Portland, OR.  and sells for a reasonable price. So check out their website and give Trail Butter a try for your next adventure!