White Bear Lake is one of the Twin Cities year-round kiteboarding areas. In the winter, the lake is accessible from any wind direction. With multiple access points, one can always drive to the middle of the lake and ride all winter long. Summertime riding is a little trickier. White Bear’s numerous docks, plentiful weedbeds, and lack of shallow water make it a riding location suited to experienced kiters. With four launch sites, it is suitable for kiteboarding in a number of wind directions. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the White Bear Lake kiteboarding launch sites.
Lake Waconia is a great place to kiteboard on the southwest side of the Twin Cities. There is a DNR boat launch on the east side of the lake with a very small rigging area on the north side of the launch. The launch area is small as well; please give the boaters a wide berth when riding here. When the wind is really blowing, they have a hard time maneuvering in the shallows. Waconia is best ridden on S, SW, W, an NW winds. On really windy days the swell can be fantastic. There are adequate shallows for launching, but be careful when the wind is directly onshore (W). Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Lake Waconia kiteboarding launch sites.
Mille Lacs is Minnesota’s BEST kiteboarding location. Its large size, clean winds, and excellent access points provide some of the best and most consistent riding in the Midwest. It is THE place to go to develop your kiteboarding skills. Whether you are at Malmo getting your first rides, or surfing the swell at Father Hennepin you will always leave the lake with a smile. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Mille Lacs kiteboarding launch sites.
Lake Superior is Minnesota’s inland sea. This is THE kiteboarding destination when the NE winds blow. Park Point offers Minnesota’s best wave riding possibilities. Take I-35 North from the cities and take the exit for Lake Avenue. Turn right (east) and continue across the lift bridge in Canal Park until you get to 22nd street. Park just past the fire station and walk over the dunes to Lake Superior. The water is alway cold. Bring a thick wetsuit or a drysuit. This is not a beginner-friendly area, but offers huge swell and a shore break for those willing to brave the cold waters. Truly a fantastic place to ride. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Lake Superior kiteboarding launch sites.
Lake Washington offers a great kiteboarding location to the west of the Twin Cities. Take Highway 12 west of Minneapolis to the town of Dassel. If you plan on launching from the Dassel Rod and Gun Club (DRAG) stop and buy a parking permit as this is a private boat launch. The permit is $20/year and helps maintain this excellent launch site. Permits can be bought at the gas station in town. For the DRAG launch take Highway 12 west from Dassel to 708th Ave. Take a left on 708th Avenue. Then take a right on 229th Street and follow it to the DRAG launch. There is a large rigging area. The DNR site on the south side is at the intersection of 690th Ave and 215th Street. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Lake Washington kiteboarding launch sites.
Lake Minnetonka offers a great winter snowkiting just west of Minneapolis. The most common location is Kite Island just west of Wayzata. There is a winter access road from Wayzata out onto the lake. Follow the road to the west, and it will go right by Kite Island. The island is about 1.3 miles from the access point. Use caution when driving on the lake. There is often a group of kiters here on the weekends in particular. Lake Minnetonka is generally not kited in the summer due to a lack of access points and very high boat traffic. If you are out on this end of the cities, consider Lake Waconia or Lake Washington in the summer months. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Lake Minnetonka snowkiting and kiteboarding launch sites.
Lake Calhoun is a great winter option in the heart of Minneapolis for snowkiting. With the road running all the way around the lake, it can be ridden on any wind direction. Simply walk out towards the middle of the lake, set up and ride. It has a great local scene. Because Calhoun is relatively small, the winds can be erratic at times. Calhoun sees a lot of traffic from non kiters as well, particularly on the weekends. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Lake Calhoun snowkiting launch sites.
Please note: The community has a voluntary ban on kiteboarding Calhoun in the summer. Please respect this decision.
Otter Tail Lake in western Minnesota offers some great kiteboarding for those wanting a road trip. Western Minnesota often has more wind than the rest of the state. The lake is very clean with abundant shallow waters. Otter Tail is about 3 hours from the cities, but those who make the drive are seldom disappointed. There are 3 public access points on the lake, as well as a couple of kiters with places on the lake. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Otter Tail Lake kiteboarding launch sites.
Cannon Lake is another southern alternative for Twin Cities kiteboarders. Only 35 miles from Minneapolis, just west of Faribault it is a short drive. There are three launch sites around the lake. This lake warms very quickly and will get green by mid-summer. Winter riding here can be fantastic as the lake does not see much traffic. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Cannon Lake kiteboarding launch sites.
Kiteboarding Clear Lake offers a southern alternative to MN lakes for early and late season riding. Head straight south from the Twin Cities to the exits for Clear Lake. The surrounding countryside is very flat, offering very steady winds. The lake can be ridden on most any direction as there are many launch sites around the lake. Click on the markers within the map for more information on the Clear Lake kiteboarding launch sites.