CARLTON, Minn. (WCCO) — More than four months after historic floods severely damaged highway access to Jay Cooke State Park, it will reopen to the public at 8 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 22, says the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Camping will resume and interpretive programs begin Nov. 3, although some trails will remain closed and some portions of the park will be difficult to access during ongoing reconstruction.

When the park reopens, campgrounds and camper cabins will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, and visitors will have access to most recreational trails. The River Inn Interpretive Center, park office and gift store will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The iconic swinging bridge is anticipated to reopen in the late summer of 2013.

Park staff expects 38 miles of hiking trails to be available on both sides of the river, and 8 to 10 miles of cross country ski trails to be groomed during the ski season. When fully open, the park offers 50 miles of hiking trails and 32 miles of cross-country ski trails.

Visitors are encouraged to check the Jay Cooke State Park page on the DNR website or for current programs, updated maps and additional visitor information.


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