Have you tried skating the Gateway Trail yet? Running from St. Paul to Stillwater, the 18 mile converted rail trail has much to offer. Here are a few pros and cons from a skating perspective.
- The trail is located right in the heart of the Twin Cities, with many trailheads and convenient access to hop on and off as needed.
- If you hop on the trail at the trailhead near the I-694 overpass, you can enjoy a fairly uninterrupted skate out to Stillwater and back (about 20 miles round trip), with only a few intersections to slow down for.
- There are a couple hilly sections of trail that lets skaters sneak in some hill work, and strengthen legs and lungs to become stronger on the straightaways.
- Due to it's location in the Twin Cities, certain parts of the trail may be restricted due to neighboring construction projects. For example, the trail is currently closed from Cayuga Street to L'Orient Street due to construction along I-35E in St. Paul. There is, however, a posted detour.
- The trail surface is not always smooth and in some spots you might encounter misc debris from overarching trees. This is especially true in early spring and late fall with the changing of the seasons.
- It's a popular trail! Depending on the day and even the time of day you hit the trail, it can be quite busy and you'll have to be polite and share the trail with other bikers, runners and skaters. So just be watchful and aware, and don't forget your trail etiquette.
All in all, the Gateway Trail is an excellent inline skating trail. Definitely worth adding to your trail list!