• Activities:

    Chillin, Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

  • Trail Type:

    Out-and-Back

  • RT Distance:

    2.05 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    340 Feet

Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
Picnic Area
River
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers

Enjoy beautiful views of Red Wing, Minnesota, the Mississippi River and Lake Pepin on this dog-friendly hike. Once you're all finished up, head to nearby downtown Red Wing for a bite and a beer.

Barn Bluff in Red Wing, Minn., is an enjoyable and easily-accessible hike. Even at a slow pace, it takes just 30-45 minutes to reach the peak.

There is ample parking on 5th Street near the Barn Bluff sign. Take the stairs to the trail head. From there, you'll have a few trail options:

1) South Trail: This is the easiest, most efficient way to reach the summit. The South Trail runs along the southern edge of Barn Bluff and moderately inclines for about a half-mile until reaching a staircase. Take the stairs to the top where you'll find a sign for the Prairie Trail, which leads to East and West Overlooks.

2) Prairie Trail: Once you reach the top of Barn Bluff, this trail connects the East and West Overlook. Keep an eye out for bald eagles soaring over the Mississippi River and surrounding river bluffs.

3) The Quarry Trail: This trail begins at the park entrance and meanders through dense foliage. It leads to a small rock climbing area. This trail does not lead to the peak.

4) The North Trail: Much more steep, narrow and wooded, the North Trail leads to the West Overlook. It has remained closed since 2013 after a jogger died following a 200-foot fall. There are signs and barricades now at the North Trail head. In April 2015, a man who climbed past the barricades in order to hike the North Trail also fell to his death.

Click here for a trail map.

Pack List

  • Sturdy, comfortable hiking shoes
  • Water
  • Camera
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Reviews

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Great views of the city and the river!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Dan Mirocha

Always up for an adventure, both urban and off-the-grid. Instagram: @danmirocha

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