White Earth State Forest is made up of 160,000 acres rolling hills and lakes with 4/5th being variegated forest and the rest being lowland brush and marsh. Almost all of this forest is within the boundaries of the White Earth Indian Reservation. The Shuttlebug Nature Trail is popular for summer hiking. It has 70 miles of marked and groomed snowmobile trails. Located about 20 miles north of Park Rapids on Hwy. 71, then west off Hwy. 113. The White Earth Indian Reservation, holds an annual Powwow; the first one was held in 1862.
Within the forest you will find both motorized and nonmotorized trails, a boat launch, primitive camping, a fishing pier, a historic site, a rest area, and WMAs to explore. White Earth State Forest has 65 miles of dual-purpose forest roads and 70 miles of snowmobile trails. Attention Trail Users: Note: White Earth tribal lands are always closed to non-band members.
White Earth Pow Wow & Celebration
The annual White Earth Pow Wow & Celebration is held on the second or third weekend of June each year at the White Earth Powwow Grounds in White Earth, Minnesota (be sure to check with tribal office to confirm date). Though the White Earth Pow Wow is a celebration of the White Earth Reservations’ people and heritage, everyone is invited. It’s an open event — not just for the native people, but for everyone. Around 1,000 dancers and over 25 drum groups can be expected. Nearly all of the state forest is within the boundaries of the White Earth Indian Reservation created in 1867 by a treaty between the United States and the Mississippi Band of Chippewa (Ojibwe). Native Americans people have inhabited the area since at least 1400, drawn to the place where the land grows food on the water, a reference to the plentiful wild rice that grows in the area.
White Earth State Forest Recreation:
- dispersed camping
- 14 miles hiking trails
- 1.7 miles class 1 ATV trails
- 1.7 miles class 2 ATV trails
- 1.7 miles off-highway motorcycle trails
- 56 miles snowmobiling trails (White Earth State Park snowmobile trail detail.)
Forest Landscape: White Earth State Forest is located at the western edge of Minnesota’s deciduous forest biome. Among the many rolling hills and lakes you’ll find Minnesota’s second-highest elevation along with Height of Land Road. The eastern part of the forest transitions into Minnesota’s coniferous forest biome. The Laurentian Divide bisects the forest—water north of the divide drains to Hudson Bay and water south of the divide drains to the Gulf of Mexico.
History: Between 1904 and 1918, the Nichols-Chisholm Lumber Company removed much of the old-growth timber from the area. Massive fires followed the intensive logging in 1918, leaving behind blackened stumps and fire-scarred pines. The Minnesota Legislature dedicated this forest in 1943 for purposes of reforestation, habitat, and recreation.
Location: Create Google Driving Map | Tel: (managed by Itasca State Park) 218-699-7251 | Email: email@example.com | White Earth State Forest Website | Distance from The Lodge on Lake Detroit • 60 miles
Detroit Lakes Parks & Trails
The Detroit Lakes area abounds with beautiful parks, lakes, rivers, hiking & biking trails and more. Detroit Lakes, Becker County, and the surrounding area offers so many recreational and outdoor activities that it is difficult to fit them into one visit. With over 400 lakes within a 25-mile radius, and with beautiful rivers and streams (not to mention the Mississippi Headwaters), many parks and trails have been created to provide public access.
Parks, such as the Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge, provide cross-country and snow mobiling trails in the winter– and even more trails for hiking and biking during the spring, summer and fall months. You can also enjoy the natural beauty from your car. The Lake Country Scenic Byway is an 88-mile corridor that follows Highways 34 and 71. Along its route, the Byway uniquely spans three different types of geographic terrain.
View Detroit Lakes Parks & Trails Guide