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Fort Ridgely State Park

Tour Historic Fort Ridgely and wander through the ruins of this once thriving outpost. Learn about the U.S.-Dakota Conflict of 1862, a major event in Minnesota's early history. Visit the museum and the cemetery to learn more. For recreation, this park offers plenty. In the summer, play a nine hole golf course, hike or ride the trails on horseback, fish the stocked pond or trout stream, camp (drive-in and walk-in sites are available), or stay overnight in the renovated farmhouse. In the winter, ski, snowmobile, or stay overnight at the chalet.

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

Visitor Alert!

Office Hours:

During late fall, winter and early spring the park will not hold regular office hours. Please use the self-registration desk in front of the office to purchse permits. If you wish to rent snowshoes, please call the park several days in advance of your visit to arrange rental.

Campging and Lodging:

The main campground, the horse campground and the farmhouse are closed until April 1, 2014. The Chalet will remain open for day and overnight use throughout the winter. Chalet reservations can be made by calling the park at 507-426-7840.

Campground Road Construction:

Due to planned road construction, the main campground road will be closed for 4-5 weeks this summer. During the construction the chalet, main campground, group camp and walk-in campsites will be closed. We ask that campers with reservations be aware of possible inconvenience, and be prepared to make alternate plans should their reservation fall within the dates of construction. The dates of this closure have not been finalized; however, we will alert visitors and reservation holders of the construction dates as soon as possible. We will do our best to help campers find another campground, or make arrangements for a future stay at Fort Ridgely State Park.

Campground Showers & Toilets:

The shower & toilet building for the main campground will be closed this summer. Water spigots and vault toilets will still be available in the campground. We are experiencing issues with our septic system and are working to correct the issues. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Sliding Hill:

The park's sliding hill has lost most of it's snow, and is not available at this time.

Skiing and Snowmobiling:

Most of the snow in the park has melted, and the ski and snowmobile trails are closed at this time.

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

Stay and Play Golf Package:

Fort Ridgely Golf Course features scenic vistas, wildlife, and wildflowers in the natural areas along the Par 35, 9-hole course. Visitors that stay three or more consecutive nights will receive two all-day golf passes for their party's use during their stay. This package is not available on holiday weekends. Get more information about the golf course

Fort Ridgely Historic Site:

The historic site grounds are open for self-guided tours each day, and the museum is open Thursday through Sunday from Memorial Day to Labor Day. A Minnesota state park vehicle permit is required. Learn more.

U.S.-Dakota War of 1862:

2012 marked 150 years since the U.S.-Dakota War of 1862. Fort Ridgely State Park was an important location during this time. Learn more.

FairRidge Trail:

A paved recreational trail connects the town of Fairfax to the park. This trail provides approximately 7.3 miles for your hiking and biking enjoyment.

Friends of Fort Ridgely:

In 2001 the Friends of Fort Ridgely was formed by a group of citizens interested in the future of the state park and historic site. The Friends of Fort Ridgely and the Nicollet County Historical Society sponsor many events at the park. If you'd like to join the Friends group, contact The Friends of Fort Ridgely, P.O. Box 292, Fairfax, MN 55332, or call the park at 507-426-7840 for more information.

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 Fort Ridgely State Park.


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

Park Highlights

tree Camping

tree Historic Site

tree Golf Course

tree Scenic Rolling Hills

tree Forests and Prairies

tree Horseback Riding


Best time to contact the park:

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day Weekends: Sunday through Thursday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Winter: Daily, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Please leave a message.


72158 County Road 30
Fairfax, MN 55332

tel: 507-426-7840

fax: 507-426-7112

email: fortridgely.statepark@state.mn.us

Getting There

Off State Highway 4, 6 miles south of Fairfax or 12 miles north of Sleepy Eye, then follow the signs to the park.