Camping, biking, skiing, canoeing and good old outdoor fun can all be found at the Hyland Lake Park Reserve south of ... More
Hyland Lake Park Reserve
Camping, biking, skiing, canoeing and good old outdoor fun can all be found at the Hyland Lake Park Reserve south of Minneapolis. The Richardson Nature Center contains numerous exhibits and information about this 1,000-acre urban, woodland reserve. The nature trails are dotted with overlooks and observation decks allowing observation of deer, pheasant, ducks, geese and a variety of songbirds. There are 7 miles of hiking trails and 6 miles of paved bike paths. The Hyland Outdoor Recreation Center contains a snack bar, gift shop and restrooms. The center rents bikes, rowboats, canoes and paddleboats in the summer and skis, snowshoes and skates in the winter. The hiking and biking trails are groomed in the winter for cross country skiing and snowshoes. A large picnic area, a small fishing pier and boat launch are situated in the lake area.
I usually walk the Chain of Lakes when I go out walking, but one day last year I decided to change it up and sample Hyland Lake. That visit, I stuck to the paved trails, and still I enjoyed it greatly...so peaceful compared to the Lakes and with great flora and fauna viewing opportunities.
Strangely, I didn't go back again until last night, and this time on a beautiful evening I decided to divert onto the unpaved/hike/dog trails, and it was even better! The trails took me out into greatly varied terrain and among hidden lakes and meadows. I also (accidentally, I think) ended up out onto the ski area, and discovered some of the best views of the southern Twin Cities available...a great surprise!
If you like to walk/hike, this is THE great oasis of the Twin Cities...GO THERE! (I would also recommend bringing a GPS...if you stay on the trails you can certainly get out of there, but if you're racing remaining daylight (like I was last evening) it might help you win that race...there's a lot of ground to cover!)
For being a park this place has everything. I am staying with some family close by to this park and we were just going to walk over there to see if we could waste a few hours but then ended up not leaving until the end of the day!!! And came back twice!!! They have the nicest trails to walk hike and you can rent all this fun equipment to use. They also have the coolest playground I have ever seen. My kids were would live in that place if they could. They also have a lake were you can take boats out. If you come too Minnesota you have to stop at Hyland Park!!!
Many dont realize that the Bush lake road that Hyland is on offers a variety of activties for the entire day. on a sunny day head over to Bush Lake Beach which charges around $5 for daily parking. Then head up the road to Hyland where paddleboating, kayaks, canoes, and even tandem bikes are offered for rental! The huge play area is great for kids, but consider later in the day due to large day camps that come mid afternoon in the summer. The Richardson Nature Center is on this same road and is great if you get rained out.
p.s. theres no entrance fee at Hyland either so its a great low budget activity!
My family recently moved to Bloomington and used their very well equipped boat rental facilities. The employees were great--especially Ted Mundy. He went out of his way to ensure that we had the best possible experience and received the most time on a coveted pattle boat as possible. As a whole, it is a great park.
When our family moved to Savage in early 2005, some neighbors recommended checking out this park. We have grown to love it, and have been back several times both in summer and winter.
The "creative play area" is fantastic for children about 4 to 12 years old. Think of McDonald's playplace, but about 5 times as big, spread across an entire hillside. Many locals call it "Chutes and Ladders" park because of this play area. Parts of the play area can be used by small children as well.
Plenty of picnic tables and grills, lots of trails to walk/ride bikes/cross country ski, and boats can be rented to take out on the lake. There is also a concession stand. Bush Lake, about a three minute drive away, has a swimming beach and play area as well.
In the winter, our kids love the lighted sledding hill - it might be a little tame for teenagers, though.
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