William O'Brien State Park

Marine on Saint Croix, Minnesota

William O'Brien State Park

William O'Brien State Park Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"William O’Brien State Park is a popular—and easily accessible—recreation area conveniently located just one hour east of the Twin Cities. Here, the St. Croix River, designated a wild and scenic river, stretches for miles until it joins the Mississippi downstream.

The featured hiking trail encompasses much of the park, skirting ponds and marshes and traveling through a landscape of rolling meadows, restored prairies and oak savannas, and stands of white and red pines. A trail leading off the main trail crosses Highway 95 to take you to the river and additional recreational options. This park is a favorite among canoeing and boating enthusiasts because of its access to the St. Croix."

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William O'Brien State Park Trail Trip Reports

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Adventurer | 228 pts
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This is an amazing park with tons of absolutely wonderful trails. The visitor center and facilities seem like a time capsule from the 1950s, but they are still in good shape (well, maybe not the poor taxidermied animals in the visitor center).

We did several trails here, including a difficult, very steep one with exceptional views of the oak savanna and some easy ones around a beaver lodge and near the river. Check the trail map to make sure you know what you’re getting into, but you’ll love everything here.
Katy, TX
Explorer | 30 pts
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This is a fantastic trail. Very well maintained and perfect for the beginner to moderate hiker! This trail truly is a "hidden gem" and is home of one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the area. Don't miss this hike!!

More William O'Brien State Park Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

"This hike begins at the interpretive center and is aptly named the Upper Park Trail. Geologically speaking, the St. Croix Valley was cut by glaciers more than 10,000 years ago. Evidence of the glaciers includes rolling hills, potholes, and boulders of various sizes strewn throughout the forests and meadows. All of these upland clues are visible along this trail. Head out behind the building to the trailhead sign. Carry a map with you, as each trail intersection is numbered for easy orientation."

Trail Information

Marine on Saint Croix
Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
3 hours
820 feet
Trailhead Elevation
990 feet
Top Elevation
Swimming, Fishing, Camping
Additional Use
William O’Brien State Park, Marine-on-St. Croix, MN; (651) 433-0500; www.dnr.state.mn.us/parks; Department of Natural Resources, Information Center, St. Paul, MN; (651) 296-6157 or (800) 646-6367 (only in MN)
Local Contacts
USGS Marine on St. Croix
Local Maps

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