St. Croix Blowdown cleanup- Visitor Alert
St.Croix State Forest visitor update:
Windstorms on July 1 and July 19 swept across Pine County, damaging St. Croix state forests. Salvage (harvest) and clean up operations are currently taking place.
- The main campground loops are open; however, the south loop will remain closed due to logging. Be aware that logging activity will be taking place in and near the campground. Please avoid active logging operations and be on the lookout for log trucks on the roads and trails. Visibility is limited; just because you can see the equipment, it doesn't mean the operator can see you.
- The hiking trails have been cleared enough for hikers to use the system.
- The entire Tamarack Horse Camp is now open for use. Timber from the July 1st, 2011 windstorm has been removed, sites cleared of debris and all safety repairs completed. Staff from St. Croix State Park and the Minnesota Horse Council will be adding gravel and reshaping several sites in the upper loop until approximately mid June.
- The horse trail system in St. Croix State Forest has been cleared and is in fair condition at this time. There are still active timber sales in several locations and riders should make sure they maintain awareness in these areas. Some locations were cleared through timber sales last fall/winter and it may be difficult to travel as trees and brush will be sprouting post harvest. There will be ongoing work over the summer to continue the restoration process. We have bridges to rebuild, erosion control structures to replace and a great deal of clearing/stumping to accomplish. We hope to have work crews (both state and private) throughout the summer on this trail system. Trail segments may be closed for periods of time.
- All of the ATV/OHM trails are open for use at this time. There may be closures for logging operations as they work to clear downed timber from the July 1st, 2011 windstorm.
- Many trails are being used to access salvage timber sales. Please use extreme caution! You may encounter log truck or pickup truck traffic on these trails.
- Currently all forest roads are open, however, please use extreme caution. There will be heavy salvage logging activity in the Forest which includes many, many log trucks. If conditions warrant, some forest roads may need to be temporarily closed to the public for safety reasons. A forest road safety radio frequency exists (151.4975, tone 77.0), however, not every log truck may be using it.
Attention all state forest visitors:
We also ask that all users be extremely cautious with campfires due to the fire hazard in the area. Remember that the legal definition of a campfire is a fire set for cooking, warming, or ceremonial purposes, which is not more than 3 feet in diameter by 3 feet high, and has had the ground 5 feet from the base of the fire cleared of all combustible material.
There may be commissioners orders invoked throughout the summer that restrict burning outside of designated camping areas and possibly within based on fire conditions. Please continue to review the DNR website for updates as they are available.
Who do you call:
- For questions concerning camping within the forest campgrounds, please call staff at St. Croix State Park (320-384-6050).
- For questions regarding both motorized and nonmotorized trails use, call the Moose Lake Trails Office (218-485-5410).
- For questions regarding timber salvage operations, wildfire, or general resource management, call Sandstone Area Forestry (320-245-6789).