Spend a day paddling the St. Croix River and celebrate its history during the 3rd Annual St. Croix Sojourn, a day of on-river activities and presentations scheduled for Saturday, July 12.
The self-guided, 6-mile route on the scenic St. Croix River passes through calm water and is perfect for first-time paddlers, families with children, youth groups, or anyone looking for a great day on the water!
This year, the Sojourn is commemorating the 100th anniversary of the closing of the St. Croix Boom, which sorted millions of logs for sawmills in Stillwater during the logging era. State park naturalists, park rangers, and volunteers will be sharing stories of lumber jacks, river rats, and the river that served as a highway for decades. Pick up a log “cookie” passport at your first stop and collect a logging stamp at each stop along the way!
Sojourn participants can start their trip between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. at either Wisconsin Interstate State Park (St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin) or Minnesota Interstate State Park (Taylors Falls, Minnesota). Access to the state parks requires a valid annual or daily vehicle pass.
All stations are free and open to the public. Presentations and educational stops include:
River Drives and Log Jams
Main Landing, Minnesota Interstate State Park (river mile 51.5) or Wisconsin Interstate State Park (river mile 52.1)
Millions of white pine logs floated down the St. Croix River during the 1800s. Pick up a log “cookie” and learn why the drives were not always easy or successful.
“Steamboats A Comin!”
Rock Island (river mile 50)
Steamboats delivered goods and provided services to growing towns in the St. Croix Valley in the 1800s. Learn about competition between steamboat captains and lumber barons over use of the river.
“Daylight In The Swamp!”
Eagles Nest Campsites (river mile 48.5)
Cutting and moving millions of white pine logs were dangerous tasks. Learn how trees were cut and transported and the impact of logging in the North Woods.
No Name Island (river mile 45.8)
As the forests were logged, the North Woods transitioned from wilderness to settlement. Find out how people found ways to provide new services using the river.
Activities at Osceola Landing, 11:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
As you leave the river, have your passport cookie stamped a few more times! Activities at this location will be available to the public, including people who do not go on the river, from 11:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Osceola Landing is located on Highway 243, across the river from Osceola, Wisconsin. Education stations here include:
- From Log To Lumber: Try sawing logs with a two-person hand saw and see othertools used to cut white pines in the 1800s.
- St. Croix Junior Rangers: Kids can learn about the history of the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway and become a National Park Junior Ranger at the same time!
- The Riverway Today: The St. Croix National Scenic Riverway encompasses 255 river miles and includes the Namekagon and St. Croix.Get tips on exploring, paddling, fishing, and camping these pristine rivers.
- Scavenger Hunts: Explore the river area today through the lens of a camera while you try to find all the items on our photo scavenger hunt list. Digital cameras provided for your use!
- Water Homes and Habitat: See some of the incredible critters that call the St. Croix home and learn why they tell us this is a great place.
Canoes, kayaks, and other equipment are not provided. For more information on this event or a listing of canoe and kayak outfitters and shuttle services, visit the National Park Service website. Additional information can be requested via email at firstname.lastname@example.org; or by calling 715-483-2274.
The St. Croix Sojourn is hosted by the National Park Service, Minnesota State Parks, Wisconsin State Parks, and the St. Croix River Association.