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Discover Scenic Parks and Enjoy Outdoor Recreation in Minnesota
Explore Buena Vista State Forest with 20 miles for cross-country skiing and 21 miles of snowmobiling to go with all your boating and fishing needs, you can’t go wrong. You’ll have a great time at Lake Beltrami, Big Bass Lake, Gull Lake, Sandy Lake, or Three Island Lake. Go hunting, picnicking, or backcountry camping if that’s your bag. Treat yourself to a panoramic view of the Twin Ports at Enger Tower when you’re in Duluth.
Go for a hike along 18 miles of trails or go mountain biking for eight miles at Gooseberry Falls State Park. Located on the north shore of Lake Superior, go and observe white-tailed deer, black bears, timber wolves, ravens, and herrings.
While you’re on the north shore, take in Tettegouche State Park. Whether on the land or on the lake, bask on the beach of Lake Superior and enjoy six inland lakes, four waterfalls, rock climbing, 22 miles of hiking trails, and 12 miles of ski trails. If you’re a bird watcher and mountain biker, you’ll have to go to Savage and see what the Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve has to offer.
The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area is a 72-mile, 54,000-acre corridor that will leave you shortage of activities from which to pick.
Buena Vista State Forest
On your next trip into Minnesota, head north to Bemidji and you'll find the Buena Vista State Forest. Over 122,000 acres of wooded forest land make for the perfect outdoor destination on your Minnesota travels. Popular with snowmobile riders during the winter, Buena Vista State Forest features 21 miles of marked snowmobile trails.
If you're visiting during the summer, don't miss out on fishing and boating around Big Bass Lake, Gull Lake, Sandy Lake, and Three Island Lakes – Minnesota is, after all, the Land of 10,000 Lakes.
Enger Park and Tower
Part of Duluth’s scenic Skyline Drive, Enger Park features an 80-foot tower that was dedicated in 1939 by Crown Prince Olav and Crown Princess Martha of Norway.
The park features beautiful gardens – both provide excellent views of the city and Lake Superior.
Plan your visit to Enger Park and check out the tower on the grounds there – a great way to enjoy Duluth.
As one of the centerpiece attractions in the area, Enger Park and Tower showcase the charm, history, and brilliance of Duluth.
Gooseberry Falls State Park
Spectacular waterfalls along the Gooseberry River – five alone north of Highway 61 – are the main draw to Gooseberry Falls State Park, but it’s certainly not at all the park offers.
Check out the Joseph Alexander Visitor Center for plenty of activities and things to see, including 18 miles of hiking trails and 8 miles of mountain biking trails.
Make sure to admire the stonework on the walls, shelters, and other buildings in the park, constructed by Civilian Conservation Corps workers between 1934 and 1941.
The park is located northeast of Duluth along US Highway 61 in northern Minnesota.
Mississippi National River & Recreation Area
While exploring the Twin Cities metro area, make time for recreational activities along the Mississippi River.
The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area can be found cutting through Minneapolis and Saint Paul – giving visitors plenty of sight-seeing and outdoor recreation opportunities.
The recreation area protects 72 miles of shoreline in total – including sites in Dakota, Washington, and Ramsey counties.
Don't miss the many historic attractions along the river, including Stone Arch Bridge, the Guthrie Theater, and Historic For Snelling – all are conveniently located in Minneapolis.
Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve
Covering approximately 2,786 acres, the Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve is set in Minnesota cities like Burnsville, Lakeville, Savage, and Credit River. The reserve is part of the Three Rivers Park District in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.
The Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve is packed with activity, and features everything from hiking, cross-country skiing, and horseback riding trails to spotting the hooded warbler. Operated by Minnesota Off-Road Cyclists, Murphy-Hanrehan’s 10-mile mountain bike trail is especially popular.
Tettegouche State Park
Just a few miles from the shores of northern Minnesota's Lake Superior, Tettegouche State Park houses a sizable chunk of inland territory offering miles of hiking and recreation trails.
When on the trail's high points on clear days, views of the distant Sawtooth Mountains, Wisconsin’s Apostle Islands, ships on Lake Superior, and Grand Marais are excellent.
Along the shoreline, you'll find Shovel Point, the 60-foot falls of the Baptism River, and the historic Tettegouche Camp.
For more information on the park's hiking trails and the historic value of the area, be sure to visit the Tettegouche Visitor Center.