Outdoor Rec

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Stillwater Mountain Bike Team Has New Home at Valley View Park in Oak Park Heights

Valley View Park will soon be home to a new single-track mountain biking trail in Oak Park Heights. The Oak Park Heights City Council in a 4-1 vote — Oak Park Heights Mayor Mary McComber dissenting — approved a new 2.5 mile trail that will be home to the Stillwater Area High School mountain bike team. The trail — located about 3 miles from the high school — will be designed for mountain bikers, walkers, hikers and runners. The trail may also be used for fat tire snow biking and snowshoeing in the winter. The nonprofit group Stillwater Area Scholastic Cycling Advocates (SASCA) will build and maintain the mountain biking trails in support of the Stillwater mountain bike team. Continue Reading →

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Stillwater’s Next Historic Stairs Fitness Hike is Saturday, May 28

Washington County’s next guided fitness hike of Stillwater’s historic stairs is Saturday, May 28 beginning at the Historic Courthouse. The monthly Historic Stairs Fitness Hikes happen on the fourth Saturday of the month, from 9-10 a.m.

The 60 minute hike includes a warm-up with fitness challenges and stair-climbing along a route that offers unique views and history highlights. Parking is available at the Historic Courthouse. The group meets inside the first floor hallway. The hikes are for ages 13 or older. Continue Reading →

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Public Hearing Set for Proposed Mountain Biking Trail in Oak Park Heights

The Oak Park Heights Parks Commission is holding a public hearing tonight for a revised proposal of a mountain biking trail at Valley View Park. The nonprofit group Stillwater Area Scholastic Cycling Advocates (SASCA) are proposing 2.5 miles of single-track mountain biking trails at Valley View Park in support of the Stillwater Area High School Mountain Biking Team. The public hearing will be held on Monday, May 16 at 6 p.m. at Oak Park Heights City Hall. View the proposal

The trail, located about 3 miles from the high school, would be designed primarily for mountain bikers, walkers, hikers and runners, according to city documents. The trail may also be used for fat tire snow biking and snowshoeing in the winter. Continue Reading →

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Downhill Ski Season Begins in the St. Croix River Valley

The downhill ski season has arrived in the St. Croix River Valley. Wild Mountain in Taylors Falls now has five runs open — two chairlifts and two ropes — with a snow base of 6-30 inches. Trollhaugen, in Dresser, Wis., also has five runs open with a snow base of 2-24 inches. Afton Alps is making snow, and announced that it plans to open on Friday, Nov. Continue Reading →

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Video: Minnesota Aviation Team Rescues Stillwater Hiker Stranded on North Shore Trail

A 62-year-old Stillwater woman was rescued Monday afternoon after she dislocated her hip while hiking at Split Rock Lighthouse State Park on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Lori Mildon was hiking on the North Shore when she sat down to rest during her hike, Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Tiffani Schweigart said during a press conference. When Mildon tried to stand up, she collapsed with a dislocated hip and was unable to walk. The Lake County Rescue Squad responded at about 1:52 p.m. to a rescue call for a hiker who was stranded on a trail. First responders determined that portion of the trail was best reached by air, so the Minnesota Aviation Rescue Team –a partnership between the St. Continue Reading →

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Construction on Minnesota Loop Trail Underway in Stillwater

Construction of the Minnesota portion of the 4.7 mile St. Croix River Crossing Loop Trail is underway. Loop Trail construction will take place in phases from now until 2017. This year’s construction will focus on the stretch of trail from north of Sunnyside Marina to north of Nelson Street in downtown Stillwater. This week, the contractor is working to secure a historic wall along the future trail and removing some trees and other vegetation. Continue Reading →

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Outdoor Yoga Continues at Lake Elmo Park Reserve: Fall Season of Indoor Yoga Starts Sept. 21

Tune into the sights and sounds of nature and release stress through guided yoga sequences designed to improve balance, flexibility, breath awareness and muscle tone 6-7 p.m. Thursdays through Aug. 20 at the North Picnic Shelter at the Lake Elmo Park Reserve. The program is open to all levels. Dress for outdoor yoga, bring a mat and arrive 5 to 10 minutes early. In case of rain or inclement weather, class will be in the Nordic Center. Continue Reading →

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StillwaterEats!: New Gateway Trail Food Truck’s Grand Opening is Saturday

The Gateway Trailside food trailer is having a grand opening party this weekend at Mile Marker 15 on the Gateway Trail in Grant. Tamra Hartman Johnson’s food trailer — parked on family property between Lansing Avenue and Highway 96 — offers trail users cold drinks and snacks, a menu ranging from hummus and crackers to burgers and brats, and apple fritters to homemade Italian gelato. Everything on the menu is priced at $5 or less. Take a look:

The Gateway Trailside is open Thursday-Sunday from 11 a.m.- 7 p.m. //

Posted by Gateway Trailside on Wednesday, July 22, 2015

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Stillwater Officials Warn Brown’s Creek State Trail Users to Obey Stop Signs

The Brown’s Creek State Trail has been wildly popular since opening late last fall, but Stillwater officials are starting to see a few safety issues that are coming along with increased trail use. One concern is cyclists who aren’t stopping at traffic-control signals where the trail intersects with roadways. Another concern is a lack of trail etiquette. “We have had a number of very close calls and narrow misses of accidents with motorists and bicycles,” Stillwater Police Chief John Gannaway said. “It’s on the onus of the cyclists to obey the stop signs, especially at the five intersections along the trail. Continue Reading →

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Explore Washington County Parks for Free on June 6

You can enjoy Washington County Parks for free on Explore Your Parks Day. Washington County is waiving the vehicle fee to all county parks on Saturday, June 6. That means you can bike, hike, fish, run, swim, geocache, take in local wildlife and visit playgrounds for free. Here’s a list of events happening on Explore Your Parks Day:

Big Marine Park Reserve Picnic Shelter 3-4:15 p.m.: Turtle Trek and Tunnel Talk led by the Minnesota Herpetological Society and the Washington Conservation District; 4:30-5:30 p.m.: Campfire Program. Cottage Grove Ravine Regional Park Fishing Pier 9 a.m.-noon: Fishing with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resource; 1-2 p.m.: Pond Dipping for Micro Invertebrates. Continue Reading →

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Valentine’s Day: Sweetheart Cross Country Night Ski & Hike at Lake Elmo Park Reserve

There is a variety of outdoor recreation activities happening on Valentine’s Day at Lake Elmo Park Reserve’s Nordic Center. From the Nordic Center Trailhead, cross-country ski 5.5 miles of LED-lit ski trails. From the Eagle Point Trailhead, snowshoe, hike or walk your leashed dog along the illuminated 2.5-mile Big Bluestem Trail. REI is leading an evening snowshoe hike class for beginners. Click here to register. Continue Reading →

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Fishing Pier Opens on North Side of McKusick Lake

The Stillwater City Council approved a joint powers agreement with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to take over the maintenance cost of a new fishing pier on McKusick Lake. Last month, a fishing pier was installed on the north side of Mckusick Lake, near the intersection of McKusick Road and Amundson Drive. The project was spearheaded by the Mckusick Lake Association, working with the DNR’s Fishing in the Neighborhood Program and the Sunrise Rotary to fund the project. The city’s contribution to the project included the grading of the path to the pier and future maintenance costs. “Our city staff, the McKusick Lake Association and the Rotary Club did a fantastic job out there, Council Member Mike Polehna said. Continue Reading →

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After Thursday’s Snow Fall, ‘Excellent Ski Conditions’ at Lake Elmo Park Reserve


Washington County Parks are still working to get their trails in order after Thursday’s snow storm, but county crews are making progress. Washington County Parks hope to have trails at Lake Elmo Park Reserve in good shape by Saturday afternoon. Other Washington County Parks trails will be groomed on Monday. Here’s a few tweets detailing the trails progress:

Excellent Ski Conditions!! East side ski trails @Lake Elmo Park have been groomed&tracked(there has been some slight drifting in some spots)

— Washington County MN (@WashCtyTrails) February 22, 2014



In LE, groomer is encountering 5 ft drifts and lots of limbs down. Continue Reading →

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Single on Valentine’s Day? Check Out the Oakdale Discovery Center


If you’re single and you feel like getting outside and mingle for a while on Valentine’s Day, you may want to check out “Single’s Sampler: Valentine’s Day Full Moon Adventure” at the Oakdale Discovery Center. Wahoo Adventures and the Oakdale Recreation Department partnered to put on an event that gives active singles in the community a chance to meet one another while enjoying snowshoeing through the park lit by ice luminaries, relaxing by our outdoor bonfire and roasting marshmallows, Kerri Kolstad of Wahoo Adventures said. There will also be local foods, wine, and beer indoors by the gas fireplace. Ticket cost is $34 per person and includes food, wine, and beer samples, snowshoes (and lessons), and luminary-lit trails.  The event is from 7 – 9 p.m. You can register at www.oakdalefun.com. Want more local stuff? Continue Reading →

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Countdown to Spring: 75 Days Until Minnesota Ironman Bicycle Ride


It’s hard to believe, but in just 75 days thousands of bike riders will take to the streets of the St. Croix Valley for the 2014 Minnesota Ironman Bicycle Ride. Registration for Minnesota’s oldest running century bike ride is underway. This is the second year Minnesota bicyclists’ “annual rite of spring” will take place in the St. Croix Valley. Continue Reading →

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6 Things To Do This Weekend in Stillwater


It’s winter in the valley, and there are all sorts of things happening this weekend in Stillwater. Here’s a list of a few things you may want to check out if you’re around town:

From noon to 4 p.m. today (Jan. 18) the Washington County Historical Society is hosting an Ice Cream Social in Lowell Park. When you’ve finished with the Ice Cream Social, “Come in from the Cold” (noon – 5 p.m.) for sales, live music and free food, beer and wine samples in the Grand Garage. Lift Bridge Brewing Co. is throwing their second annual Silhouette Imperial Stout Special Release Party this weekend at the brewery. Continue Reading →

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