Wild River State Park

In the area

From Explore MN Tourism

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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

Horse trails closed for the season

Horse trails are closed for the season so we can prepare trails for skiing. See you next spring!

Park open during hunting season

Wild River will remain open during hunting season. Please exercise caution if you are hiking in areas near private property.

Be wildlife wise

Wild River is a natural place, so campers are encouraged to take precautions to ensure that unwelcome "guests" like raccoons, bears, squirrels and other wildlife are not attracted to their campsites. This is especially important for backpack campers. Being wildlife wise benefits all campers, and helps keep wildlife wild. Please inquire at the office with any questions or concerns.

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 to get to the park headquarters and main use area (39797 Park Trail, Center City, MN 55012). Take exit #147 (Hwy 95) from I-35. We are located 15 miles east of North Branch off County Road 12.

Purchase permits for Sunrise Landing in advance

Going hiking, horseback riding or boating from our Sunrise Landing? Be sure to purchase a permit in advance from the main office, or purchase an entry permit online. Permits are not available at the Sunrise Landing.

Updated 11/1/17

Park Notes

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)

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

Geocaching adventures at the park

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.

Only use approved firewood!

Help prevent the spread of tree-killing insects by burning only approved firewood, available at all Minnesota State Parks.


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.