State Forests

Huntersville State Forest


Forest Landscape: This forest lies entirely within the coniferous forest biome. Topography contains a mix of glacial features such as hills and old outwash and till plains. Historically, fires occurred every 10 to 40 years, and today jack pine, quaking aspen, and paper birch dominate. Stands of red and white pine are also found in the forest.

Management Activities: From year to year, you may see changes in this forest. The DNR manages the trees, water, and wildlife in state forests for everyone to keep them healthy and meet recreational, environmental, and economic goals. Trees are harvested to make a variety of products, such as pulp for making paper, lumber and building materials, pallets, fencing, and telephone poles. Through careful planning, harvesting, and planting, land managers create forest openings or plant trees and vegetation to improve habitat for white-tailed deer, ruffed grouse, and waterfowl. The DNR manages state forests to prevent wildfires, and keep our water and air clean.

History: The Dakota and Ojibwe people first occupied the Crow Wing River area. In the early 1700s French fur traders arrived and controlled the fur business. Between the 1870s and the early 1900s, logging was Wadena County's chief economy. Timber taken from the dense forests along the Crow Wing River and its tributaries created jobs for hundreds of early settlers and provided an economic base for many towns in the area. Along the Shell River in the northern part of the Huntersville State Forest, Shell City was established in 1879 as a lumber camp. It was named for the river's clams, which were used to make buttons in the city's button factories. The Shell City Navigation Company headquarters, incorporated in 1884, was formed to operate steamboats and barges on the Shell and Crow Wing rivers from Shell City to the Mississippi River. Shell City was eventually abandoned and the region's economy came to depend on agriculture. Today, recreationists still use the roads created by the early loggers.

Acres: 33,963

Year Estab: 1963


Rare Species Guide:


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