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Jay Cooke State Park

Trailblazers: this park is a must! Park trails link up to the Willard Munger State Trail at the north edge of the park; perfect for backpackers, bikers (both mountain and tour), hikers, horseback riders, and skiers.

Check out the wildflowers in the spring, and the vivid colors in the fall. Walk on the swinging suspension bridge high above the raging St. Louis River. Visit the historic cemetery and the gorge at Thomson Dam.

Tell me more about this park's wildlife, history, geology and landscape.

Visitor Alert!

Park Updates:

11/25/13 No Water

The waterline for the park is frozen, so we have no running water for facilities. Please bring your own drinking water. Porta-potties and pit toilets are available in the campground and visitor use areas.

The campground is still mostly snow covered with last weeks foot of new snow. It may be a few weeks before snow is gone from all campsites. Campers with reservations should expect to be directed to alternate campsites in the park that have been cleared.

Highway 210 and Swinging Bridge are open!

The Swinging Bridge is now open again, and the Highway 210 bridge has also reopened from the West end - the road currently ends past Oldenburg Point at the Jay Cooke Road. To reach the park office easiest, enter through the west entrance in Thomson/Carlton. The east entrance off of Hightway 23 is still closed to the public, and the Jay Cooke Road area remains soft due to construction. Please refrain from using this area if possible.

Timeline and photo history of the Swinging Bridge
Map of the park showing flood damage locations
Photos of the flooding at Jay Cooke and other state parks

Last updated December 12, 2013

Park Notes

Be fascinated. Check out the naturalist programs and other activities scheduled at the park.

Learn More about the Park:

Who is Jay Cooke?This link leads to an podcast. (5:05 MP3 narrated by Kris Hiller, Park Naturalist)

Virtual Tour:

Take a virtual tour. It's a great tool to help you plan your next trip to the park!
Panoramic tour | Snapshot tour

Gift Cards:

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 Jay Cooke State Park.


Bird ChecklistThis is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it. at Jay Cooke State Park.

Park Highlights

tree Camping

tree Hiking

tree Swinging Bridge

tree Pioneer Cemetery

tree Thomson Dam

tree Oldenburg Point


Best time to contact the park:

Office Open Daily 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.


780 Highway 210
Carlton, MN 55718

tel: 218-384-4610

email: jaycooke.statepark@state.mn.us

Getting There

From the town of Carlton go 3 miles east on State Highway 210 to use the west park entrance. The east park entrance off of Highway 23 in Fond Du Lac is still closed.