Frontenac State Park
By Jim Umhoefer
Frontenac State Park has a story that’s as old as the ice age. The sandstone and limestone formations that are today’s bluffs were once sediments that hardened into rock at the bottom of shallow seas. Then, raging glacial rivers carved the broad river valley that we see today. A natural dam formed from material deposited by the Chippewa River as it emptied into the Mississippi created Lake Pepin. The park is a favorite of birdwatchers. Some 260 species of birds have been observed here as they make their way up and down the Mississippi during migration. Frontenac State Park is located 10 miles southeast of Red Wing in Minnesota’s Goodhue County.
Come back to the river country during winter for some cross-country skiing or snowshoeing. Seven miles of beginner to intermediate trails start from the trail center parking lot and branch off through the bottomlands to Sand Point or climb up to the picnic area. There are two wood-heated shelters along the ski trails. About three miles of trails are designated and groomed for snowshoeing. You can blaze your own trail anywhere in the park, except on groomed ski trails.
More about skiing at Frontenac State Park