Minnesota DNR receives additional land donation along St. Croix River

Expansion of Chengwatana State Forest will offer recreational opportunities, provide water quality benefits.




2 minute read

Snake River, Chengwatana State Forest (Brett Whaley/Flickr)

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has received a 241-acre land donation from the Trust for Public Land. The donated land, located within the Chengwatana State Forest along the St. Croix River, will be managed by the DNR as part of the state forest.

This transfer completes a two-phase donation from TPL totaling more than 700 acres. The DNR is grateful to TPL for this donation, and to Chisago County for its support for adding this land into public ownership as a working forest.

“Not only does this parcel’s high biodiversity and location along the St. Croix River make it an important piece to protect, it will provide recreational opportunities to many,” said DNR Forestry Division Director Patty Thielen. “Managing these 241 acres as part of the Chengwatana State Forest for public benefit is a perfect fit for the DNR.”

The donated land includes portions in the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, a federally protected 252-mile system of riverways located in eastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin.

“Protecting this segment of the St. Croix watershed is critical not only for providing residents and visitors with public access to hiking, hunting, and wildlife viewing, but for ensuring water quality benefits for surrounding communities,” said Bob McGillivray, land protection director for TPL. “Trust for Public Land is thrilled to continue to work with the DNR and our partners to ensure more people can get outdoors and enjoy the benefits of nature.”

The TPL led the effort to purchase the land, previously owned by Xcel Energy, using a grant funded by the Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Fund. More information about TPL and their mission can be found on their website.


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Minnesota DNR receives additional land donation along St. Croix River