Dear Lucky Riders
of the 2017 Tour De Pines,

What a privilege to host a bike ride on maybe the nicest Saturday of the entire summer. On Sunday we cleaned up, packed up, and put away all signs of a bike ride in and around Itasca Park and at the hostel. Then we went for a great bike ride.

Now I wish to pass along my thanks to riders, volunteers and supporters of this nice event. The ride takes lots of behind the scenes effort and we cannot do it without our kind-hearted volunteers. They provide much more than a friendly face on the ride. We had 24 close friend’s, family and supporters of the Mississippi Headwaters Hostel help us again this year.

The ride attracted just over 200 riders from 85 zip codes. They came mostly from Minnesota but also many from North Dakota and a few from MI, WI and TX.

Now thinking ahead….

Tour De Pines 2018 will happen on 8.18.2018. That has a nice ring to it 🙂

Next year we celebrate our 10th anniversary. We are planning to carefully create a Century Ride. 40% of our riders sign up for the 70-mile route and another 40% for the 25. So we are going to make some changes to encourage more riders with both long and short distances in mind.

I want to give a shout out to Sam at Itasca Sports. Sam is an amazing bike mechanic and he helped out dozens of riders on Saturday. First at the registration area and all day long as we delivered riders to him at his shop in the Park.

And also I want to thank Christine from the Emmaville Store and Jeff and Eileen from Summer Hill Farm for hosting our rest stops. They are delightful and supportive friends to the ride and the hostel. In addition, we get great support from Bob Chance, Superintendent, Itasca State Park.

And finally I want to ask you to consider coming back to Itasca Park and staying with us at the hostel. You know this Park and the magic it has to offer. We are open every day in the summer and most weekends all the additional seasons. You can reserve a bed, a private room or the entire hostel that sleeps 31. Price is really reasonable. Just contact Sara at 218-266-3415 or even better at

Now talk is all about the State Fair and the summer coming to an end. You did yourself proud to cap-it-off by riding with us on Saturday. My thanks to the 40% returning riders and the new folks that discovered this fun event.

You are our best marketers. Thank you for bringing along your friends and for spreading the word for us. Until next year, Pedals Up. And I hope the wind is always at your back.

With gratitude and thanks…

Jon Ridge
Sara Parthun
Hostelling International USA

Inspiring a genuine understanding of people, places and cultures for a more tolerant world.

HI Mississippi Headwaters Hostel

Stay With Us

Headquarters for the Tour de Pines is the HI Mississippi Headwaters Hostel.  Located in Itasca State Park, just a short distance from the headwaters of the Mississippi River, HI Mississippi Headwaters hostel is a beautifully restored log building. Constructed in 1923 as the park headquarters, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.Itasca State Park, recently rated one of the nation’s top 50 state parks by National Geographic, features some of Minnesota’s last remaining virgin pine forest.

Enjoy outdoor recreation year-round on over 30 miles of hiking and cross-country ski trails and 17 miles of paved bike trails right from the hostel’s doorstep. Bike and boat rentals and a swimming beach are across the road. The park offers summer naturalist programs and displays on Native American culture and early explorers. – See more at our website

Tour de Pines


Enjoy the new Rest Stops at the Emmaville Store and Summerhill Farms.

Emmaville Store
Emmaville Inn
Itasca Sports
Itasca Sports
Summerhill Farms
Summerhill Farm