Afton State Park Reviews
Hiking along the St. Croix River Oct 25, 2008
Since it was such a beautiful fall day, I conned my parents into joining me for a hike in Afton State Park. We hiked along the old railroad grade parallel to the St. Croix River. From the parking lot you head down a bunch of steps and then the trail is level. Many of the leaves had already fallen, but the trees were still beautiful, especially across the river (on the Wisconsin side). We walked as far as the beach on the trail and then walked along the beach from there. The only one swimming was a black lab, since it was a little chilly.
Near the beach is a canoe campsite - you pull your canoe up on shore and then hike up some steps to a nice little campsite. The beach area also has a picnic area and some other campsites nearby. The only real downfall is that if you want to have a picnic, go camping or go swimming, you have to hike everything in. The hiking in isn't so bad, its the hiking everything back up the hill that could be a problem for some people.
From the beach we split - Dad went back the way we came and mom and I continued following the hiking club trail. I don't think the hiking club trail was very scenic once it left the river. The trail crossed a small stream and then followed along the base of Afton Alps ski area and lodge. We followed a road and then went up a hill, but I was able to collect my password. This part of the hiking club trail is also a horse trail, so we had to step around some horse droppings.
We popped in the little visitor center before leaving to see some signs and exhibits. A family was in there enjoying a fire in the stove.
The park has 20 miles of hiking trails, 18 miles of cross country ski trails, 5 miles of horse trails, two picnic areas, a canoe campsite and 24 backpack sites. I'll definitely have to check out the backpack sites sometime.
Part of the Minnesota - travels around the state travel blog
Part of the list Minnesota State Parks
Part of the list Minneapolis-St. Paul
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