Take a bow, Heart of Lakes Trail

Otter Tail County Board officially accepts new name for paved recreational trail that will run 32 miles from Perham to Pelican Rapids

HOL Trail.jpg
The Heart of Lakes Trail is the new official name of the Perham to Pelican Rapids trail.
Otter Tail County Website
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PERHAM – The Perham to Pelican Trail has a new name. During the Otter Tail County Board meeting on Tuesday, June 14, the trail was dubbed the Heart of the Lakes Trail.

The 32-mile recreational trail was given its name based on Otter Tail County’s 1,048 lakes and the critical connection between the Central Lakes Trail and Heartland Trial systems. The trail will offer a 10-foot paved path and have five distinct segments: Perham, McDonald, Silent Lake, Maplewood and Pelican Rapids.

A portion of the Heart of the Lakes paved path has been constructed.
Contributed photo / Terry Shannon

The commissioners were informed that a gravel base will be put down for a section of the trail near Pelican Rapids in coming weeks. Work is set to start on the section that begins at Highway 59 south of Pelican Rapids, extends to County Highway 3 and goes onto Isle View Drive near Maplewood State Park. The cost for this segment was reported to be $2.83 million.

Construction on the McDonald and Silent Lake segments are also set to begin this summer.

The Perham segment was completed in the summer of 2021.


The cost of the trail is as follows:

  • The west segment received a $2.6 million grant from the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources. The trail section that is now being constructed required $1.45 million in matching funds.
  • The design for the Maplewood section received a $375,000 grant from state bonding. At this point the section is a design only.
  • The Silent Lake section received a $1.87 million grant from Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails. The section of trail is set to be constructed this summer and requires a $2.59 million grant.
  • The McDonald trail section received a grant for $2.24 million from the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources. The trail is set to be constructed this summer and requires local matching funds of $746,958.
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