Fort Snelling State Park-St. Paul-Minnesota

Today’s hiking adventure began at Fort Snelling State Park.

We parked by the Thomas C. Savage Visitor Center and began our hike towards Pike Island. Let me backup a bit, this past winter Minnesota experienced its 3rd snowiest winter. This past week, the weather was in the high 80’s which meant the snow melted fast! As we neared the bridge to cross over to Pike Island we noticed…well…as you will see in the picture below, the bridge was surrounded by water. Since we didn’t have a canoe, we needed to change our hiking plans.

We decided to hike the paved trail towards Coldwater Spring. The weather was cool and rainy. It sure was nice to see little bits of spring beginning to pop out.

In the distance, we could hear running water. We exited the paved trail and began to explore the unpaved trails. A mini waterfall surrounded by colorful graffiti appeared.

As we entered Coldwater Spring, more signs of spring began to appear.

We continued to hike the unpaved trails towards Minnehaha Falls.

The Mississippi River was flowing fast. Areas that were normally dry were now flooded.

The trails led us up and down the cliffs. The heavy snow storm we had a week ago did lots of damage. Many trees were down, thick branches were snapped, and even the cliffs weren’t immune to the damage.

The trail close to the river was underwater, so back to the paved trail we went. The Ford Parkway Bridge can be seen in the distance. There is an island in the middle of the river. Currently it is under water, however, you can still see the tops of the trees.

We took the staircase back down to the trails closest to the river.

The water is close to the top of this bridge’s archway.

The trail crosses under the Steel Bridge also known as the Minnesota Veterans Home Bridge.

The closer we got to the Minnehaha Falls the louder the rushing water became.

Minnehaha Falls

As we looped back towards our starting point, more signs of spring began to appear.

We crossed over an old bridge and down an old staircase. The trail at the end of the stairs was flooded.

We hiked the paved trail back to our cars.

Today’s hiking adventure was 8.2 miles.