Explore Fall

Things to Do


Listed below are a few of our favorite fall programs and activities. To find out about additional programs, visit our Calendar or call the Mississippi River Visitor Center at (651) 293-0200 to speak with a ranger.

Colorful trees line a path through the forest.

Things to do this Fall

Take a Hike amid Autumn Colors

Winchell Trail

Walk among maples amidst colorful maples resplendent in scarlet and gold! The 5 mile roundtrip Winchell Trail is a hiking-only trail on the west bank of the Mississippi River between Franklin Avenue and 44th Street in Minneapolis. Unpaved trails break away from the main trail along the bluffs and cut into the woods, permitting additional exploration of the Mississippi Gorge. Peak color varies from year to year, but usually occurs around the end of September to the first weekend in October. There are several sets of stairs and trails that lead down the bluff to the trail at various places along the route.

Battle Creek Regional Park

Battle Creek Regional Park can have great autumnal color. Park near the creek at 2300 Upper Afton Road, Maplewood/St. Paul and walk upstream along the placid stream. Stop at one of the picnic tables for a snack and enjoy the sights, sounds, and scents of autumn.

Coldwater Spring

Usually when we think of autumnal color we think of forests, but prairies also have their own unique fall colors of tans, golds, and russets. Coldwater Spring is a wonderful place to hike. The first part of the trail that goes out to the springhouse is hard-packed and an easy hike. For something just a bit more strenuous hike past the springhouse, through a second prairie, down an informal trail to the bike path. Turn left and walk along the trail until you come to a wooden staircase on the left and take it back to the entrance.

Minnehaha Regional Park

Nextdoor to Coldwater Spring is Minnehaha Falls Regional Park. Park near the Sea Salt Restaurant walk the easy, paved trails around the gorge. For a more strenuous hike, take the staircase down into the gorge and hike along Minnehaha Creek.

Go Fishing!

Fishing is great in the fall as fish prepare for the cold water of winter, but there are so many other things to do while fishing in the fall as well. Birds are migrating, wildlife stalks the river banks, the air is crisp, and the leaves are changing. Fall is one of Minnesotans favorite times of the year. Find out more about find out more about fishing on the Mississippi River.

Program Calendar

Check out our program calendar to find public programs that we offer during the fall season that includes: Paddle With a Ranger: Fall Colors, Hike With a Ranger: Fossils, and Global Bird Day at Coldwater Spring.

Last updated: September 30, 2021

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

111 E. Kellogg Blvd., Suite 105
Saint Paul, MN 55101


This is the general phone line at the Mississippi River Visitor Center.

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