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What travelers are saying
- We took a spontaneous drive to Itasca from Fargo, ND. With just a couple of hours, we walked to the Mississippi Headwaters and drove the Wilderness loop, stopping to enjoy the early fall foliage and lake views. A surprise find was the variety of wild mushrooms within 800 ft. of the Mary Gibbs CenterWritten September 30, 2022
- My first visit to the headwaters in the Winter. Nothing short of breathtaking. The path was fairly clear and the weather was spectacular. Just wish the bathrooms had been open. Guess they were closed for the season.Written November 29, 2022
- This a very nice drive through scenic Minnesota. One can see the beautiful trees that are unique to that area of the country.Written July 8, 2022
- Very impressive trees (There are others in the park that are larger but this is a easy acces place to see large trees) Its a short hike from the road or the paved bike path.Written November 10, 2022
- This is the lake where the Mississippi river starts. The lake itself is huge and provides lots of opportunities for water sports.Written July 8, 2022
- Aiton Heights Fire Tower is located inside Itasca State Park. It requires a $7 daily car fee or $35 annual pass to enter. Once you are in the park, there are dozen's of things to see and do. Mississippi Headwaters is the marque stop, but this one should not be overlooked.
It's located about halfway around the one-way nature drive. There is parking at the trailhead. It's a flat easy 1/2 mile walk out to the tower. A few informational signs are posted where various buildings used to exist when this was an active tower.
The climb up is simple and you are contained within the tower itself. Out of shape or disabled people may still make it up if they go slow and rest. There are handrails all the way up with landings every 10 feet. As you go higher, the wind is a factor. You can feel it moving the tower.
The view is worth it. We were there in June and everything was green and beautiful. About halfway between the tower and parking is a small pond. There were a pair of Trumpeter Swans with babies swimming around.Written July 7, 2022
- The walk leads to a lake overlook platform. Very nice and peaceful. We didn't see anyone else when we were there on a Friday in July.Written September 14, 2021
- The trail is really not that long but has up and down and around. Most of the trail is dirt but as you get further back, there is boardwalk available. The trail goes right past the Bison Kill Site which actually consists of sign telling about it. The real goal is the Red Pine. It was formally the tallest Red Pine in Minnesota. It was, unfortunately, hit by lightening. But the tree still stands and continues to be home for a variety of birds and animals. Would recommend this site for a good walk.Written June 13, 2017
- We walked along this trail - what a beautiful view of all of the trees. It's a circle trail, and not very far so easy to do with kids. On the trail walking along, I managed to step on a snake, which was probably more scared than I was - so watch out for little critters along the trail!Written June 29, 2013
- As noted by others, this is just an information sign explaining the bison kill location. However, the sign is directly adjacent to the Red Pine trail, so there's no extra effort needed if you were going down that trail anyway.Written September 11, 2021
- Short walk to a tree. Weird that it would be a landmark, as it's no longer even the tallest tree of its kind. But, yeah, it's a short walk off the Wilderness Road loop, & a good excuse to get out of the car & get some fresh air. There are SO MANY beautiful places in this park, this particular landmark is a bit anticlimactic.Written September 11, 2022
- The tour was relaxing and well narrated. It was a joy to cruise the lake while viewing wildlife. I watched numerous birds including several Bald Eagles, Osprey, and Loons. The crew was fantastic and Captain Scott was very courteous. I fully intend to return for another tour.Written July 7, 2021
Frequently Asked Questions about Lake Itasca
Lake Itasca Attractions Information
|Local Time||Thursday 6:25 PM|