Blue mounds state park mn Blue mounds state park mn

Top 5 Amazing Things to do at Blue Mounds State Park MN

The next time you pack your bags for a short trip to blue mounds state park mn, don’t forget to get on some sleeping tents and a pair of swimsuits because you are in for some great adventure and a thrilling trip at the blue mounds state park mn in Minnesota.

The park is home to the most iconic American Bison herd; nearly 100 bison herd grazes in the 600 acres of the park.

blue mounds national park
Photo by Thomas Fields on Unsplash

It is a must-visit for everyone, be it a family campground, a class trip, or a quick visit to catch up on some greens or a trip to your nearest hiking club.

It is packed with adventure and historical lines of rocks, a legend of the Native Indians (early settlers). You can go in there for just a small walk too.

There are quite a lot of significant yet must-visit spots in notably the Sioux Quartzite cliff; the 1250-foot-long lines of rocks, the Frederick Manfred House, and the lakes and dams which are a part of the 10000 lakes which gives Minnesota the nickname of, “the land of 10,000 lakes.”

Don’t be in for a surprise if you find huge quartz rocks from a distance at the park entrance.


The park is named blue mounds State park after the linear escarpment of the Sioux Quartzite cliff, which, even though pink in color is believed to have appeared and looked blue to the Native Indians, the early settlers of the now Park.

Hence, the name blue mounds state park is a perfect combination of nature wild lives and prairie grasslands.

The blue mounds state park is disabled-friendly. It is supportive of people in need and is designed in such a way that they do not have any problem accessing the attractions that the park has to offer.

Location of the State Park – Blue Mounds

Blue mounds State Park is located in the midwestern state of Minnesota in the US.

The state shares a border with the Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Ontario on the northern side, lake Superior and the American state of Southern Wisconsin situated in the east, South Dakota and North Dakota in the West and Iowa on the southern border.

Although it has a county highway route and a super busy highway that leads to the park, it is worth your time considering the picnic area and its campsites, and the beautiful park office at the park.

You can witness an amazing plain filled with the native park 300 feet above the small city of Luverne. From this view, Iowa is visible in the south and the state of South Dakota to the west making blue mounds state park truly spectacular.


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Image by David Mark from Pixabay

The park is home to some of the most distinct bison species in the United States of America it features the most legendary American Bison which are no less than a hundred in number.

A few packs of coyotes and a small population of deer reside in the park too, it is a must-visit for a birdwatcher to witness the several western varieties as well as the birds of the native tallgrass prairie grasses, and in case it is a children’s trip they sure will have the best time spotting some bison, deer and some coyotes and few truly spectacular bird at the park.

Vegetation at Park

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Photo by Diego Torres from Pixabay

It also features prickly pear cacti and tiny flowers sway and other wildlife and other birds flock during the season, making blue mounds look truly mesmerizing during the autumn and winter season

You are sure to catch some exotic birds during summer, on a drizzly day or while on a short drive or a small walk or perhaps nesting blue grosbeaks, feeding their young ones.

It truly is a natural surprise to have such a spectacular view located at the blue mounds, do not forget to give it a short visit during your next visit to Minnesota.

Geological Significance 

The geological past of blue mounds state park is unique and extremely dynamic, and many parts of this legend are well portrayed in the state park.

It dates back nearly two 2 billion years and has been largely associated with tropical weathering of the planet’s most pre-historic crust, the formation of some of the primitive life forms, and fierce rain storms that constantly bring sand across broad, barren valleys.

Tectonic plains and percolating underground water that turned those sand into sandstone which resulted in sandstone and then the rock type known as quartzite for which blue mound is famous.

It resulted in blue mounds state park which is synonymous with plenty of natural surprises. It fills blue mounds state park with huge quartz rocks inside an ideal geologist spot.

The American Bison Herd

The history of bison in the park dates back to the 1960s when three bison were brought from the Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge which is located in the state of Nebraska and the idea was to build a perfect environment for bison to grow further at blue mounds.

Do not forget to visit the observation deck located on the site from where you can get a view of healthy bison grazing in the field.

The domestic and reassembled tallgrass prairie is native to nearly one hundred American bison.

You can feel the 600 acres of the bison herd, where you can witness and get a glimpse of what life looked like before the prairie settlements.

Bison Population

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Photo by antjee89 from Pixabay

There are almost 65 bison during the winter season and they can reach up to 100 in the summer season after the calves are born.

Hence, it is important to maintain a sustainable level and various methods are taken to keep them at it including auctions during the fall, thus making their population constant and maintained.

Visitors are warned to keep a distance from the bison range and are advised to roam around the campsites and campgrounds.

You can visit the Bison observation deck where you can catch up on some bison grazing the grassland. There they are most probably going to be in the southwest corner of the range. It might be seen from the western loop trail.

Minnesota Bison Conservation Herd

In the year 2012, the Minnesota zoo and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources agreed to an agreement which was to partner and develop Minnesota Bison Conservation Herd.

In 2017, a bull from Yellowstone National Park was added to the herd and it is largely believed that diverse genetic species allow for healthier and stronger development and are a major contributing factor to the conservation of the American Bison at the blue mounds.

Activities at the Mounds State Park MN

 1. Hiking 

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Image by Igorshubin from Pixabay

One of the most sought-after reasons to visit blue mounds state park mn should be for hiking.

The blue mounds with its county road and bur oak hiking trail are the best hike spots in the blue mounds and are available all year round.

If you are someone who likes adventure, then this park is an absolute must-visit with a picnic table too to have a delicious brunch post you are hiking club trip.

The hike has easy access points and it gives riders a very fortunate opportunity to experience Minnesota’s state parks’ tall grasses and lush green prairie grasses while catching up on some fresh showers and hiking all the way with your loved ones.

2. Camping 

You can have a truly incredible time at the blue mounds state park main campground, and you can choose from a variety of sites from one of 40 electric or 33 non-electric sites.

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image from Fabricio FGMsp from Pixabay

The campsite comes with easy access points for visitors and includes drive-in sites. A campground at blue mounds is well equipped with all the basic sanitation facilities like showers, flush toilets, and dump stations.

The campsite at blue mounds also comes with loading facilities which are 18 feet in diameter and canvas tipis sleep six which is located in the cart-in-campground. You can check here for further detail.

The park is open year-round and offers nearly 77 wooded sites and is equally considerate enough to have cabin facilities for people with disabilities.

One must also be respectful of the other wildlife and fellow other campers at the campsites at the mounds state park mn and do not forget to try their lodge services.

If you are not a camping person, they surely will have you taken aback by their service.

3. Swimming Pool 

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Photo by Adam from Pixabay

One of the most sought-after reasons to visit the blue mounds is its iconic pool. It is a 1950 square-foot pool and is made summer ready with its outdoor theme.

It’s ideal during the hot summer day, its dimensions are a depth of 3 feet and a maximum depth of 4 feet for the kids.

It is extremely user-friendly and also has ADA chair lifts for people in need. It is designed in such a way that it can be accessed without one’s help and for assisted use.

The pool has locker facilities available as well to store your belongings but in case it is something expensive do not forget to carry your lockers.

Also, an important point to be noted is that it does not have lifeguards on duty, and children below 16 years are not allowed without a guardian or a caretaker. Food is prohibited in the pool at blue mounds state park mn.

4. Military Ridge State Trail at The Blue Mounds State Park

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Photo by Sven Lachman from Pixabay

The Military ridge state trail at blue mounds state park mn is a 40-mile military route that connects the town of Dodgeville and Madison, the route dates back to the 1855’s military route.

The trail runs along the southern borders of the city of Dodge and blue mound state park and it passes by the countryside, forests, wetlands, and prairie grasses.

Fun fact: there is a history museum located a few miles away from the blue mounds state park so if you are into art and history, you truly will have an amazing time spent there.

The Ridge offers various recreational activities such as:

1. Ice age national scenic trails – The Ice Age Trail at the blue mounds state park stretches’ the Military Ridge State Trail for a small distance near the Verona parking area.

It goes beyond in the north and goes in the south through Badger Prairie County Park located close to it.

2. Skating Bicycling and Walking – The smooth levelled grade surface and even limestone and asphalt plain present at blue mounds state park make this 40-mile trail extremely perfect for bicyclists, walkers, joggers, skaters and athletes.

The 2.5-mile distance between the towns of Fitchburg and Verona has been made with asphalt surface, making it perfect for inline skating for skaters.

Also, bicyclists or skaters who are 16 or older need state trail passes to pass.

3. Hunting and Trapping – Hunting and trapping are a BIG NO at the blue mounds state park mn.

A part of the trail property located in the town of Ridgeway is about 100 yards from the trail corridor.

This part is allowed for hunting and trapping during the Wisconsin state park hunting season.

5. Paved Bike Trails 

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Photo by Tom Conway on Unsplash

Pack your bicycle and have a lovely ride. A paved bike trail begins at the picnic area of the campground and stretches nearly 6 miles south to the city of Luverne blue mounds.

Blue mounds state park creek has several different access points for cyclists, the hiking and cycling journey is filled with much shade to not have you sweat and is absolutely worth it.

6. Electric Sites

Each campground, including the room at the campsite, is well equipped with a picnic table and a fire ring.

Toilets and water fountains are easily found everywhere around the campground. Two electric sites are available for people who have disabilities including a modern flush toilet and shower building.

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Photo by Tommy Lisbin on Unsplash

The Footnote

Blue mound state park mn is notable for its thick green vegetation and its natural picnic area which consists of a bur oak forest, pool, fire ring, lush green prairie park, huge quartz quarry, spectacular views, and awesome sights.

You are sure to have a truly incredible time to spend at the park do try to visit it between Memorial Day and Labour Day weekends as you get to spend quality time in the pool and splash pad. Do not forget to check this post on Fort Ridley State Park.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Park permits are $35 annually, $ 26-second vehicle, $12 handicapped, or $7 daily. Camping fees are separate.
  • Deep down under the Blue Mounds is granite bedrock, the “roots” of mountains that stood here more than 2 billion years ago. The mountains were eroded down to a rolling granite plain.
Q. Why is Blue Mound called Blue Mound?

Last Updated on March 15, 2023 by ibtisam72