Snowshoeing in Baker Park Reserve

Made possible by

About

Summary

The Three Rivers Park district maintains 38 miles of snowshoe trails at 11 parks and reserves. The parks offer dozens of snowshoe hikes, some by full moon, some by candlelight, some for beginners or just for women. Snowshoes are provided, and most fees are $5. Baker Park Reserve has over 5 miles of winter trails to explore.

Written by

Lou Dzierzak

Distance

20.0 miles

Destination Distance From Downtown

18.5 miles

Difficulty

2 of 5 diamonds

2

Time To Complete

1 hours

1 hour to all day

Seasonality

Winter

Winter

Dog Friendly

On Leash Only

Fees Permits

No

None

Review

Intro

Located on Lake Independence, Baker Park Reserve offers 2,700 acres of natural landscape. During the summer there are more than 20 miles of hiking trails to explore in Baker Lake Park Reserve. In the winter snowshoers and cross country skiers explore areas often un-accessible in the summer. Overall the landscape is flat and won't challenge younger family members or first time snowshoers. 

 The hike around the circumference of Lake Katrina begins from the Homestead Trail parking lot. As the song says, "I can go right, I can go left. It's all up to you to decide."

When you turn left, the trail begins on a wide rutted path through mixed woodlands and snow-covered meadows. Moving forward through a series of rolling hills with some steep climbs, this section of the trail offers long vistas of Lake Katrina. Stands of tall sugar maples and groves or white birch trees offer a stark contrast to snow-covered meadows and rolling hills.

After a junction that leads to another parking area the Homestead Trail moves through a grassland and scrub woods with a small marsh is visible on the left. Approximately half way around the Lake Katrina loop, the trail reaches a road crossing that leads to a trumpeter swan refuge but the area is off limits. 

When the trail reaches the top of a hill a large frozen pond is visible on the left. A lone oak tree stands tall out of a snowfall covered of prairie grasses. The vista begs you to stand for a moment and contemplate the beauty of a winter landscape. 

What Makes It Great

Just 20 minutes from downtown Minneapolis, Baker Park Reserve is a wonderful venue to introduce a family to snowshoeing. The trails are flat. The clubhouse offers rentals, a limited concession menu and most important, clean bathrooms. Park naturalists offer winter snowshoe treks to search for animal tracks. Warm up with the hot cocoa included in the reasonably priced registration fees. Included with events, Snowshoes can be rented for a $5 fee. Rentals are available on a first-come, first-served basis. After an epic snowfall call ahead for availability.

Who is Going to Love It

Snowshoeing is a wonderful way to introduce people to the joys of being outside on a winter day. Rental equipment, flat terrain, wide open vistas of Lake Katrina and surrounding wetlands makes Baker Park Reserve a smart place to start a cold adventure. Scenic vistas of Lake Katrina are never far away and scattered picnic tables and benches offer a place to stop for a moment to get your water bottle or energy bar out of your daypack. 

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

The park is open from 5 a.m-10 p.m. There are no fees or permits required. 

Similar Local Snowshoeing Spots

See all

More Minneapolis Activities

View Minneapolis

More Snowshoeing in Baker Park Reserve Activities

Local Minneapolis Stories

Location

Snowshoeing in Baker Park Reserve

2301 County Road 19
Maple Plain, MN, 55359
45.022628, -93.636839

Get Directions