Nestled in the heart of Mandan, North Dakota, the Harmon Lake Trail presents a captivating blend of wild flora and cycling terrain, awaiting enthusiasts with its picturesque allure and versatile route options. A moderate trail that's become a favorite for many, this destination is a testament to North Dakota’s underrated cycling landscape.
- Distance: 19 mi
- Level: Moderate
- Route type: Loop
- City: Mandan
- State: North Dakota
Harmon Lake boasts of an impressive 13.2-mile route, surrounded by vibrant wildflowers. Cyclists are treated to four distinct loop options:
- Otter Creek: A 9-mile loop around the lake.
- Epic Loop: Spanning 5 miles, this loop is situated on the west and connects back to the main trail.
- Chutes And Ladders: This 2.25-mile loop lies west of the floating bridge off the main trail.
- Blue Sky Trail: A 3-mile adventure beginning and concluding west of the stock dam, branching from the Epic Loop.
Predominantly frequented by mountain bikers, this trail welcomes visitors from May through October. Dog owners can also bring their furry companions, provided they remain leashed.
For those approaching from I-94, take exit 153 directing towards N Dakota 1806. A right at Mandan Ave, followed by a slight left on Old Red Trail/Township Rd 105, leads to N Dakota 1806. About 8.5 miles down this route, a left at 32nd St reveals a housing development on the right. An immediate left subsequently leads into the parking vicinity, culminating in a total distance of approximately 11 miles from Mandan.
- Many riders praise the trail’s maintenance and its fluid course, highlighting considerable elevation shifts which seem unexpected for the region.
- Climbs and downhill rides are perfectly balanced, as per multiple reviews, enhancing the riding experience.
- Some of the best riding on the trail is reportedly found in the Epic Loop, hosting downhill sections and the trail's only significant climbs.
- The trail allows for both clockwise and counter-clockwise rides, with the majority favoring the clockwise direction for better downhill segments.
- For those seeking a swift ride, the trail can be covered within an hour. The trail offers a harmonious blend of open terrains and tighter sections within trees.
- The trail's locale is often touted as surprising, especially given North Dakota’s primarily flat topography. The trail's soil varies, consisting of dense-packed dirt in some areas and rockier sections elsewhere.
For both beginner and seasoned cyclists, Harmon Lake Trail stands as a testament to North Dakota's untapped cycling potential. With varied terrain, breathtaking views, and the flexibility of multiple loop options, it promises an unmatched experience for every rider.