Winnewissa Falls— Pipestone National Monument Professional Guide
Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook
"Catlinite, or “pipestone,” quite literally is the stone used for making ceremonial pipes. This red-hued stone, held sacred by Native Americans for hundreds of years, is still quarried today, and Pipestone National Monument is named for this stone and its tradition among native people. The 1-mile Circle Trail leads past the quarry to Winnewissa Falls. The waterfall appears out of place in the rolling, treeless prairie of southwestern Minnesota.
Natural fires once burned freely in this area, but early settlers’ attempts to control the burns allowed trees and shrubs to grow near Pipestone Creek. Today the creek follows a serpentine forest of oak and cottonwood, winding through a vast sea of grasses. In a gust of moving water, the creek tumbles gently over a bluff of pink Sioux quartzite into a shaded glen of jumbled boulders."