Hike the Afton State Park Trail
Minnesota › Afton State Park Trail
Added by Joe Whitson
Beautiful look-outs above the St. Croix River, with over 20 miles of hiking trails to choose from and campgrounds are available. There is also horseback riding, bird-watching, cross-country skiing, swimming, mountain biking in 2,702 acres of park and only 5 miles from Afton.
This diverse, 2,702-acre park has trails for both day hikers and backpackers – some with scenic views of the St. Croix River, others which drop into quiet ravines. For the best views of the valley, explore off-trail, where you may find hidden bluffs with panoramic views.
The park also offers horseback riding, mountain biking, swimming, and cross-country skiing, in the winter.
A good introductory hike in the park begins at the visitors' center. Take the steps down towards the St. Croix River, and continue walking alongside the riverbank until you pass a beach and the trail turns left. Climbing upwards, you will reach a trail junction about 1.4 miles in. Keep left to loop back towards the river, eventually taking you back to where you started at the visitors' center.
- Hiking boots
- Camping gear
- Gear for other activities
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Lovely for a dayhike
I intended to camp at Afton State Park but after finding out how expensive camping is for tents in Minnesota, decided to save my money for a park farther from home. ($27/one night/primitive tent site) Instead, I visited for a day trip and hiked 4 miles through their small prairie, deciduous forest, and along the riverfront. It was a lovely hike for a warm day, though much of what they called trails were actually paved pathways. It was very crowded with people visiting the river beach but after hiking about a mile in, the crowds pretty much vanished. Lovely for the day but would probably explore new places in the future rather than return to Afton.
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