Spring Lake Park Reserve

A man looks at an exhibit overlooking a lake.


Before construction of Lock and Dam #2 at Hastings, Spring Lake was separated from the Mississippi by a ribbon of land. But when Lock and Dam #2 was completed in the 1930s, the increased water level above the dam inundated the Spring Lake basin. Today, though the area retains the name of the original lake, the lake itself has become part of the river.

The trail system takes you through an evergreen forest of jack, red, and white pines.

Please respect private property by not trespassing on adjacent properties.


Activities include hiking, skiing, biking, community garden plots, archery course, and a model airplane field. Spring Lake Park Reserve offers over 3 miles of cross-country classic ski trails and almost 2 miles of cross-country skate-ski trails. Birdwatching is very good here during migration. Watch for bald eagles and turkey vultures soaring along the bluffs, nearly at eye-level.

Schaar's Bluff Gathering Center main room may be rented to civic and private groups, while the lobby is open to all. Contact Dakota County Parks. The Center has restrooms, park information, maps and outdoor fire-rings.

Biking, Watching Wildlife, Family-Friendly, Fishing & Hunting, Winter Recreation, Hiking & Walks, History & Culture, Picnicking, Visitor Center

Hours, Directions, and Contact Information

  • 8:00 am to 10:00 pm

  • Schaar's Bluff: 8500 127th Street East, Hastings, MN 5503: GPS 44.765874, -92.936050

  • Contact: Dakota County Parks at (952) 891-7000.

  • See the Dakota County website for more information.

Last updated: February 28, 2020

Park footer

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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