WILD RIVER STATE PARK

More than 30 miles of hiking and cross country ski trails attract visitors to Wild River State Park. Opportunities exist for both novice and experienced trail users. About 14 miles of beginner trails, 16 miles of intermediate trails, and 3 miles of advanced trails await cross country skiers. Seventeen miles of trails are groomed for combined cross country and skate skiing. Twenty miles are available for horseback riding from May 1 – October 31. Lots of options exist for taking a short 10 minute jaunt or a longer three hour adventure.

Find your favorite trail!

PARK ADDRESS:

39797 Park Trail
Center City, MN 55012
651-583-2125
MAP IT

A MN State Park Pass is required for all trails. $35 annual/$7 daily fee. (2020 rates. Subject to change per the MN-DNR. For a full list of rates, go here.)

Visit the MN-DNR website or more information.

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: easy

MITIGWAKI LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: MULTI-USE

WINTER: MULTI-USE

The Mitigwaki loop begins at the Visitor Center. This loop is just over one mile in length and goes through oak woods on the ridge above Dry Creek. A spur trail connects the Visitor Center with the Trail Center. “Mitigwaki” is an Ojibwe word for oak woods.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: PAVED

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 1 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: Spur Trail connects the Visitor Center

 

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:easy

AMADOR PRAIRIE LOOPS

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: mULTI-USE

WINTER: MULTI-USE

The Amador Prairie loops begin at the Trail Center. These loops will take you through a level open grassland with scattered oak islands. A one mile or two mile loop runs north of the trail center. Tall prairie grasses and wildflowers can be seen on these loops.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT & HORSE TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: GRASSLAND

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: ONE OR TWO MILE LOOPS

NOTABLES: Look for Wildflowers

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:EASY

OLD LOGGING TRAIL (UNIVERSAL TRAIL)

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: mULTI-USE

WINTER: MULTI-USE

This fully accessible asphalt-surfaced trail includes the Old Logging Trail and part of the Mitigwaki Loop. It provides access for all non-motorized uses other than horseback riding and links the Trail Center, Visitor Center, picnic area and campground. This mostly-wooded trail is just under three miles in length.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: PAVED

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 3 MILES LINEAR

NOTABLES: Fully Accessible

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: EASY

RIVER TRAIL

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: MULTI-USE

This wooded trail provides access to the backpack campsite at Spring Creek and links up the picnic area with the river access. The river trail is 1 1/2 miles in length. A highlight on this trail is the Nevers Dam overlook and history display.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 1.5 MILES LINEAR

NOTABLES: Look for the Nevers Dam overlook

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: EASY TO INTERMEDIATE

RIVER TERRACE LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: MULTI-USE

This wooded, scenic loop begins in the picnic area and is 1 1/2 miles in length. The trail provides access to the campground on the north end of the loop by climbing 164 winding steps. Excellent hike for spring wildflowers and birds. Winter hiking and snowshoe trail.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL, STAIRS

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 1.5 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: 164 WINDING STAIRS

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:coming soon

DRY CREEK

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: mULTI-USE

This secluded trail along a north-facing hillside lies on the south side of Dry Creek. A historic cement structure is located adjacent to this trail which is a scenic route off the Pioneer trail.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: .7 LINEAR

NOTABLES: Scenic route off the Pioneer Trail

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:EASY

PIONEER TRAIL

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: MULTI-USE

WINTER: MULTI-USE

The Pioneer trail itself is just over two miles in length but is reached via a 3/4 mile access trail beginning at the Trail Center and running through oak woods, savanna, and a small prairie. The Pioneer trail runs along the edge of an open grassland area. This is a popular horse trail. The Meadow Vista backpack campsite is located adjacent to this trail.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT & HORSE TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 2 MILE LINEAR

NOTABLES: Popular Horse Trail

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: intermediate

DEER CREEK LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: MULTI-USE

WINTER: MULTI-USE

This three mile loop trail is reached via a 1/2 mile access from either the Visitor Center or the River Access. The trail crosses the scenic Deer Creek bridge and part of the trail is located along the historic Point Douglas to Superior Military Road (Old Military Road). The trail also provides access to Deer Creek and Buck Hill backpack campsites.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT  & HORSE TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 3 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: Crosses scenic Deer Creek Bridge

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SUNRISE TRAIL

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: MULTI-USE

WINTER: HIKING, SNOWSHOEING

This trail extends north ten miles from the Trail Center to the Sunrise River. The trail crosses Amador prairie and passes through pine plantations, bottomland, and upland hardwood forests. Two Adirondack trail shelters are located along this trail.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT & HORSE TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 10 MILE LINEAR

NOTABLES: UNGROOMED WINTER TRAILS

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:INTERMEDIATE

SUNRISE LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: MULTI-USE

WINTER: HIKING, SNOWSHOEING

The Sunrise Loop can be accessed from the Sunrise picnic area and river access parking lot. This rugged five mile loop crosses a large beaver dam area through bottomland hardwood forest and can be seasonally wet.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT & HORSE TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 5 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: Accessed via the Sunrise Picnic Area

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

GOOSE CREEK LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: mULTI-USE

This three mile loop provides access to the Goose Creek campsite. It goes through bottomland hardwood forest along the river and receives minimal summer trail maintenance due to difficult access and a high water table. Winter hiking and snowshoe trail.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 3 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: Minimal Summer Maintenance

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL: intermediate

ASPEN KNOB LOOP

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: mULTI-USE

This two mile trail begins at the Trail Center with access through an oak woods and scattered white pines adjacent to the park office. Steep hills and rugged terrain make this an expert skate ski loop. The trail provides access to Aspen Knob and Breezy Valley backpack campsites.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 2 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: Steep hills and rugged terrain

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:coming soon

WHITE PINE RIDGE TRAIL

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: mULTI-USE

This very scenic 1/2 mile loop trail is just south of the Pioneer Trail. A spectacular view of the river valley can be seen from the bench located at the top of the hill.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: INTERMEDIATE

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: .5 MILE LOOP

NOTABLES: View of St. Croix River

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:EASY

AMIK'S POND

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: HIKING, SNOWSHOEING

Self-guided trail that begins at the visitor’s center.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 1 MILE

NOTABLES: Brochure pick-up available at trailhead.

Hiking in the Woods
DIFFICULTY LEVEL:easy

WINDFALL TRAIL

TRAIL USES:

SUMMER: HIKING

WINTER: hIKING, SNOWSHOEING

Self-guided trail that begins at the visitor’s center.

TRAIL TYPE: FOOT TRAFFIC

TRAIL LEVEL: EASY

SURFACE: NATURAL

PASS REQUIRED: YES

LENGTH: 1 MILE LINEAR

NOTABLES: Brochure pick-up available at trailhead.