You might be able to drive from North Dakota to Lake Superior – without a road

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Can you imagine driving an off-road vehicle from one end of Minnesota to the other?

The Department of Natural Resources is starting to shift from imagining it to planning it.

The agency says it's working with four-wheel drive enthusiasts on developing a 400 mile trail that would run all the way across northern Minnesota.

They're calling it the Border to Border Off-Road Vehicle Trail (B2B for short).

It's still in the early stages, but the DNR says it's already working with two partners on the project: the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council and the Minnesota 4 Wheel Drive Association.

Mary Straka of the DNR's Division of Parks and Trails tells the Star Tribune the vision is not one of helmeted racers zipping through ravines, but rather families cruising through forests at low-gear speeds of 20 mph. Straka says such a trail would have an impact on tourism in the communities it passes through.

She tells the paper a meeting in Grand Rapids on Monday will kick off the planning process.

If you do like watching those helmeted racers...

Of course, not all off-road vehicles are found on trails. Some of them race each other around a track – like one that recently opened in Elk River called ERX Motor Park.

This weekend it's hosting a pair of races that are part of a national summer series known as The Off-Road Championship. The Elk River stop on the tour is known as the Twin Cities Takedown.

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