Wild River State Park

In the area

  from Explore MN Tourism

Snow conditions


The park received around 7" of snow February 2nd. ... More details »

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Wild River State Park

Wild River State Park is located along 18 miles of the beautiful St. Croix River. The park attracts people who enjoy camping, hiking, horseback riding, canoeing, interpretive programs, self-guided trails, and cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Day visitors can enjoy a leisurely paddle down the St. Croix River from the Sunrise river access to the southern park river access.

The park provides opportunities for semi-modern camping, group camping, equestrian camping, backpack camping, and canoe camping. Visitors who want modern amenities can reserve the guest house which provides a living room, dining room, kitchen, and fireplace. The park also has six camping cabins which include bunkbeds, a table, and benches.

An all-season trail center is a great spot to relax after hiking or cross-country skiing on the 35-mile trail system. A visitor center with exhibits and environmental education programs is open year-round.

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

Visitor Alert!

New! Winter Trip Itinerary

Check out the new one-day winter trip planning guide, designed for beginners or first-time visitors to the park in winter.

Winter Activities Update

The Sunrise and Goose Creek trail segments have been converted to back-country style ski, snowshoe and winter hiking routes. No ski grooming, tracking or packing will occur on these trail segments.

The park will still maintain, groom, pack, or set track on approximately:

• 19 total miles of cross-country ski trails, including 6 miles of groomed skate ski trails, and 15 miles of classic tracked ski trails.

• 3 miles of packed hiking/snowshoe trails

You may also snowshoe or hike anywhere in the park except on trails groomed for skiing. Camper cabins and our Guest House are available for rent daily. Drive-in winter camping is available with or without electricity. Backpack sites can be accessed only by ski in the winter. Water is available at the park office.

Visit ParkFinder and the Winter Activities Guide for an overview of winter recreation opportunities available statewide at mndnr.gov

Equestrian Riders/Campers

The park's equestrian campground and trails are closed for the season. Horse trails are scheduled to open on May 1, 2016.

Winter Reminders

Park grounds are open daily from 8 a.m. - 10 p.m. Pets are allowed on hiking/snowshoe trails only. Be sure to keep your dogs leashed at all times. Please contact the park office with any questions.

Using a GPS Unit to Find the Park?

If you are using a GPS unit to direct you to the park, you must type in the park address (39797 Park Trail, Center City, MN 55012) to get to the park headquarters and main use area. Take exit #147 (Hwy 95) from I-35. We are located 15 miles east of North Branch off County Road 12.

(Updated December 4, 2015)

Park Notes

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

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

Why Visit Wild River State Park?

Listen to a brief overview This link leads to an podcast. of park staff and visitors' favorite features and reasons to visit the park. (MP3, 3.25MB)


Trumpeter Swans
Watch a short video on opportunities to see these impressive birds on your next winter visit to Wild River State Park.

Maple Syruping
Maple Syrup: Sweet and Sustainable This link leads to an external site. This article gives a good peek at real maple syruping.

Teacher Resources

Requested Naturalist Programs Available This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.

Prairie restoration project at Wild River state park

A Vanished Forest: outdoor exhibit visitors' guide and teaching ideas.

Nevers Dam...The Lumberman's Dam This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it. (30 pages, 1 MB) - An illustrated history of a St. Croix River logging era landmark

Geocaching Adventures at the park

Overview of all the geocaching opportunities at the park This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.

Wild River State Park (Way)Points of Interest This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.
These virtual caches will ensure that you don't miss a thing on your visit to Wild River State Park.
Note: These are virtual caches. There is no physical 'box' at the end.

Wild River State Park History Cache 1 This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.
Discover Wild River State Park's past throughout this extremely advanced puzzle challenge.
Note: This cache is a separate geocache activity for Wild River State Park only.

State Forest Campgrounds:

Wild River State Park also manages the Snake River Forest Campground, located in the Chengwatana State Forest, near Pine City, and is open from early May to late November. No reservations are available for this campground. For information on these units, please contact the Wild River State Park office at (651) 583-2125.

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 Wild River State Park.


Bird Checklist This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it. at Wild River State Park.

Park Highlights

tree Camping

tree Canoeing

tree Cross-Country Skiing

tree McElroy Visitor Center

tree Nevers Dam Overlook

tree Wildlife/Wildflowers


Best time to contact the park:

Daily, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


39797 Park Trail
Center City, MN 55012

tel: 651-583-2125
Park Naturalist: 651-583-2925

email: wildriver.statepark@state.mn.us

Getting There

From I-35, take State Highway 95 to County Road 12. Drive 3 miles on County Road 12 to the park entrance.

Do not rely on a GPS unit to find the park's main entrance! GPS units direct you to the geographic center of the park (Sunrise Landing area), not to the main park entrance. Please consult a map or call the office if you need additional driving directions.