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Doug Welker August 11, 2010 at 3:52 am

Earlier today my wife and I stopped at the Boy River trailhead on the Chippewa, to do a couple miles of hiking at a convenient location on our way back from a 5-week trip out west.
I knew the NCT crossed MN 200 here, and headed NE near the east end of the Boy River bridge. We saw the sign for the NCT trailhead as we headed east on 200, but stopped at what is apparently the canoe launch parking lot by the bridge and started hiking east along the road from there. We discovered the NCT trailhead at the edge of the woods, but only after encountering a short spur trail heading SE did we realize that we had not actually started from the NCT trailhead. This is a very confusing situation for someone not familiar with the trailheads there. I suspect many folks think as I do that the first parking lot they see is for the NCT.
We hiked about a mile NE from the actual trailhead and returned. The trail had been mowed earlier this summer, and was not in bad shape. However, the only “tread” I noticed was from dirt bikes. In addition, we saw only ONE NCT blue blaze in the two miles (a mile and a mile back) that we walked! That blaze was on a tree near the road, and is visible to westbound hikers.
For a while I was uncertain that I was on the NCT!
Anyway, this is just a note to let you know of the issues there.
Doug Welker
President, Peter Wolfe Chapter, NCTA

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