by Mary Jo Mosher & Kristine Mosher (Falcon Guides)
If brilliant color and variety in landscape are what you’re looking for, Maplewood State Park is not to be missed. Late summer or fall, when the park’s leaves are at their peak, are the best times to visit this area. It is a region of dramatic relief and the home of the state’s largest ironwood tree. Although the woods consist primarily of hardwoods, tamarack and a few red cedar also grow in the park. Maplewood lies on the eastern edge of the Red River Valley, within the kame- and kettle-marked Alexandria Moraine.
Several trails, including an interpretive trail, encircle the park’s small lakes. Although some of them are marked equestrian, hikers are welcome on all. Throughout the park are conical hills of various sizes and heights (called kames), made up of gravel and sand, and now blanketed by trees and prairie grass. These kames are the handiwork of melting, debris-carrying glaciers and are typical of the area along the Alexandria Moraine.
© 2009 Mary Jo Mosher & Kristine Mosher/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.