Top Stops at Sakatah Lake State Park

Recommendations from park staff of things to see and do at the park.

Explore the Big Woods Trail

Photo of fall scenery along the Big Woods Trail.With wildflowers in the spring, cool shade in the summer, brilliant colors in the fall and exciting skiing in the winter, the Big Woods Trail is fun to explore in every season.

Camp with 50 friends

Photo of paddling on Sakatah Lake. The group camp is available for campers staying nearby the lake.The Lower Group Camp is located along the shores of Lower Sakatah Lake. The site can accommodate up to 50 people, tents only. There's a private dock for fishing, boating, watching the sunset or gazing at the stars. You’ll find the best fishing in the spring and fall.

Pack a picnic and spot a bird

Photo of the types of birds you might spot during a visit to the park.Pack a few sandwiches, carrot sticks and a juice box or two. You'll find plenty of shady picnic sites throughout the park. As you relax over lunch, see if you can spot (or hear) the Blue Jay, Cedar Waxwing (see photo) or Black-capped Chickadee from the park's bird checklist. Sakatah Lake State Park is a popular birding destination, especially during the spring warbler migration.

  • The park office has birding kits you can borrow for free! The kit comes with binoculars and guide books.

Try a bike-in campsite

Photo of bikers traveling from state trail to state park.Up for a multi-day bike ride? Plan an overnight at the park. Four bike-in campsites are available to riders along the Sakatah Singing Hills State Trail. There is no vehicle parking near these sites, but drinking water and toilet facilities are located in the Upper Group Camp. You’ll find plenty of shade and secluded privacy to rest up for your next day on the trail! Find the bike-in sites on the 


Discover a Scientific and Natural Area

Photo within a forest found at Townsend Woods Scientific and Natural Area.The Townsend Woods Scientific and Natural Area (SNA) is just a short stretch north of Sakatah Lake State Park. You’ll find a pristine example of the “Big Woods” that used to cover parts of south central Minnesota – sugar maples, red oaks, basswoods, oaks and shrubs. Enjoy the undisturbed natural quality of this SNA.


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