Member Trip report
Afton State Park
Trip Report/Photos from Sluggoaafa
Minnesota DNR has a couple of clubs (Hiking & Passport) that when you visit their State Parks and do several hikes, or get a stamp of the park in your booklet, you can enjoy a night of camping in any park...plus with the Hiking Club, you can receive patches at certain milestons.
With clear skies and temps near 40, I couldn' pass up this beautiful hike with little to no wind. During the winter, the majority of parks have a Summer & Winter map for hikers and skiers. Many of the trails are groomed in the winter for cross-country skiers, and are closed down to hikers (unless you go on them with snow-shoes and have a certain skiers pass.
I decided to follow a few people who were hiking, and I was not dissapointed. Great open prairie where they are trying to regrow the weeds and grass, a view of the St. Croix River that seperates Minnesota and Wisconsin, and walk along a path that butts up to the Afton Ski Resort.
There were several people out enjoying the beautiful day, some with dogs. All MN State Parks you are suppose to keep pets on leashes, but with little to no people running around, many allow them to run off, but quickly put them on a leash when they see another person coming.
After my hike in the park, I drove north to Stillwater, MN and decided to have a late lunch, and completely forgot that they had closed the 'lift-bridge' to traffic and only allow bikers and pedestrians to cross over the St. Croix River. I was fun to walk across this historic bridge, which can be seen in the movie "Grumpy Old Men". Once I was in the middle, the wind was starting to pick up, and of course with ice on the river and snow on the ground, that wind truly made it much colder.
I would like to get back and check out their Lift Bridge walking loop which seemed to be just about a 2-mile hike/walk.
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