This post is going to be a quick overview of Wild River State Park. It’s located along the St. Croix river about an hour north of Minneapolis. We visited for a little Saturday morning hiking but it also has campgrounds, cabins, horseback riding trails, canoeing and cross-country skiing in the winter. The leaves were just starting to change but I bet they will be really colorful in the next couple weeks!
A little history on the park according to the Minnesota DNR:
The St. Croix River Valley was first occupied by nomadic people 6,000 years ago. For thousands of years, the valley was home for the Dakota and Ojibwe Indians. After Minnesota became a territory in 1849, a military road was constructed through the park. It was part of the route from Hastings to Lake Superior and a portion of it is still evident today. The great white pine logging era resulted in the building of Nevers Dam in 1890. The dam operated until 1912.
We hiked from the Visitors Center to the Nevers Dam Overlook. The dam is no longer there but you can see where it once stood. After frequent log jams created by the booming lumber industry, the dam was built to regulate the flow of logs. You can read more about the dam here.
I really enjoyed the relaxing hike along the St. Croix. Audi was a big fan of the river as well.
On our way back to the city, we stopped in North Branch and had a hearty breakfast at Merchants Cafe which is located inside an old bank. The food was all made from scratch and the atmosphere was really fun.
All-in-all it was a very successful Saturday morning and we can check another State Park off of our list!