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The Best Place for Canoe Trips in Minnesota

Updated on June 16, 2010

St. Croix River

Click thumbnail to view full-size
South View on Lower SectionSandbar on Upper SectionTiny Island on Upper SectionBench on West Bank of RiverFootbridge at Beginning of Lower SectionCliffRock Climbers on Lower SectionRock Climbers on Lower SectionSandbar on Lower SectionBaby Bald EaglesTurtle
South View on Lower Section
South View on Lower Section
Sandbar on Upper Section
Sandbar on Upper Section
Tiny Island on Upper Section
Tiny Island on Upper Section
Bench on West Bank of River
Bench on West Bank of River
Footbridge at Beginning of Lower Section
Footbridge at Beginning of Lower Section
Cliff
Cliff
Rock Climbers on Lower Section
Rock Climbers on Lower Section
Rock Climbers on Lower Section
Rock Climbers on Lower Section
Sandbar on Lower Section
Sandbar on Lower Section
Baby Bald Eagles
Baby Bald Eagles
Turtle
Turtle

If you're looking for a great afternoon of fun and recreation in Minnesota, take a trip down the St. Croix River in a canoe or kayak. There's nothing more enjoyable as a pleasant ride down the St. Croix River on a beautiful summer day.

There are two popular canoe and kayak rental locations on the St. Croix River and they are both located right in the downtown St. Croix Falls and Taylor's Falls area.

My personal favorite is Eric's Canoe and Kayak Rental. He has the Old Town molded canoes and kayaks and has locations on both the Wisconsin and Minnesota sides.

Eric's first location, which offers a shorter river trip of only 7 miles runs down to Osceola, is on the Wisconsin side in St. Croix Falls. It is located on Highway 35 just one block south of State Highway 95 and situated on the west side of the highway.

Eric's second location, which offers a 10 mile river trip, is at Wild River State Park in Minnesota near Almelund. You are completely independent and you travel southward down the river. He rents a canoe for $40 and a kayak for $30 per trip. He also provides a free shuttle service.

The other canoe rental is on the Minnesota side and is called the Taylor's Falls Canoe and Kayak Rental. They have aluminum canoes and molded kayaks, which rent for $42 and have either a 7 mile trip (down to Osceola) or a 17 mile trip (down to William O'Brian State Park).

Canoe trips range about 3 to 5 hours for the 7 to 10 mile trip, and a full day for a 17 mile trip.

Little Known Secrets of the St. Croix River

There are several campsites along the river. On the upper section of the river there are no requirements or restrictions for staying at any one of the primitive campsites.

All sites are accessed from the river. However, a couple of sites on the upper section of the river are accessible by vehicle from the road.

Each site along the river contains a fire-ring and a picnic table and is marked by a brown and white tent symbol visible from the river.

On the lower section of the river there are some restrictions and they require a camping pass. All sites are taken on a first come, first served basis.

Please view the slide show found in this article for a sample of what you'll see during your river trip, and be sure to watch for plenty of wildlife when you actually get there!

For more information on scenic rivers in Minnesota, check out St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. (Other local recreation includes tubing, boat tours, Alpine Slides, and skiing).

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    • profile image

      Tannya 

      9 years ago

      WOW! Thank you for the information! I LOVE canoeing and am always looking for interesting and great places to go!

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