Tour Historic Fort Ridgely and wander through the ruins of this once thriving outpost. Learn about the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862, a major event in Minnesota's early history. Visit the museum and the cemetery to learn more. For recreation, this park offers plenty. In the summer, hike or ride the trails on horseback, fish the stocked pond or trout stream, camp (drive-in and walk-in sites are available), or stay overnight in the renovated farmhouse. In the winter, ski, snowmobile, or stay overnight at the chalet.
Tell me more about this park's wildlife, history, geology and landscape.
Camping and Lodging Update:
All campgrounds in the park are closed for the season. Campgrounds will reopen on April 1, 2017.
Lodging is available on weekends at the chalet throughout the winter. Reservations are required -- contact the park directly to make a reservation.
Hiking trails are covered in snow and ice. Hiking is not recommended.
The low water crossing just north of the main campground is closed due to a deep channel that has developed in the middle of the creek. Horses may temporarily use the campground foot bridge in order to cross the creek.
The new bridge north of the horse campground is now open. One section of trail north of the bridge is closed due to a culvert wash-out.
Sliding hills in the park are open. The main hill near the chalet is hard packed and icy. Hills across from the parking lot are snow-covered and slower. The chalet's lower level is open on weekends.
The park does not rent out inner tubes. Sliders can bring their own plastic sleds or tubes -- no runner sleds or toboggans are allowed.
Due to safety concerns, the amphitheater stage is closed. No access is allowed. We are working on repairs and anticipate the amphitheater will reopen in 2017.
The chalet will be open for public use Friday, Dec. 23 and will remain open during normal park hours through Monday, Jan. 2. Following the holiday week the chalet will be open Saturdays and Sundays during regular park hours for the rest of winter.
Fort Ridgely Historic Site:
The historic site grounds are open for self-guided tours each day, and the museum is open Friday through Sunday from Memorial Day to MEA weekend. A Minnesota state park vehicle permit is required. Learn more.
Purchase a Minnesota state parks Gift Card.
Don't move firewood!
Burning non-local firewood can spread invasive species, and it's against Minnesota state law. Learn more. Always buy your firewood at the park, or from an approved local vendor. Find firewood vendors for Fort Ridgely State Park.
Bird Checklist at Fort Ridgely State Park.
Best time to contact the park:
Mid-May through MEA weekend: Thursday through Sunday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Winter: Regular office hours are not kept during the winter. Please call or email the park and leave a message.
72158 County Road 30
Fairfax, MN 55332
Off State Highway 4, 6 miles south of Fairfax or 12 miles north of Sleepy Eye, then follow the signs to the park.