Minnesota’s Waters of the Dancing Sky Byway is the state’s most northern scenic route. The use of “Dancing Sky” in the name reflects that the road often rewards travelers with a view of the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights. This ride is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure across Minnesota.
In addition to the dancing sky, the route provides many activities, including fishing, boating, beaches, waterfalls, wildflower fields, and bird watching. On your journey, you will pass near national and state parks and the Rainy River.
If you have dreamed of seeing the Northern Lights, this route provides an excellent opportunity. Read on to learn all you need to know about Minnesota’s Waters of the Dancing Sky Byway.
Quick Travel Information
The dancing sky scenic byway extends 191 miles across the northern edge of the state alongside the Canadian border from Voyagers National Park, past International Falls, to the border of North Dakota.
The route takes you along three different roads. Starting in Dove, Minnesota, you take State Highway 11 to Karlstad, Minnesota. From there, connect with US Highway 59 and remain on it until you see signs for State Highway 175 toward the North Dakota Border.
The ride should only take a few hours, but you will want to meander to enjoy all of the sites along this route and maximize your chance to see the Northern Lights.
Points of Interest Along the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway
The byway leads you through cities, towns, forests, farmland, and the Rainy River. On the eastern side of the route, you will encounter Voyageurs National Park. The park consists of several lakes and waterways with excellent fishing.
Other excellent fishing opportunities exist in the Rainy River and Lake of the Woods in Zippel Bay State Park. Lake of the Woods is a massive wilderness lake with a beautiful three-mile-long beach.
Several resorts lining the eastern section of the route offer lodging, recreational activities, and tours. Sports fans are thrilled to discover the Bronko Nagurski Museum in International Falls and Warroad, also known as Hockeytown, USA.
Be sure to visit the Giant Willie Walleye statue in Baudette. You will pass seemingly endless fields of wildflowers, especially between Baudette and Warroad. The aptly named Grand Mound is home to the state’s largest Indian burial mound.
The International Pine to Prairie Birding Trail is a total of 500 miles in length and extends into Canada. There are 51 places to stop along the route in Minnesota’s 200-mile stretch with signage for bird viewing. You can spot over 275 species of birds along the trail.
Lake Bronson State Park is on the western portion of the route off US 59. Lake Bronson is a fantastic location to spot wildlife. You may get lucky and see a moose or two! So take your time and enjoy Minnesota’s Waters of the Dancing Sky Byway.
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Stay safe when you tour Minnesota’s Waters of the Dancing Sky Byway!