MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Flooding has forced some campsites and trails in Minnesota state parks to close.
Three nights after the downpour, rivers like the St. Croix are still rising. That’s why the DNR is expected to announce a no-wake zone along the Minnesota-Wisconsin border tomorrow morning.
On Thursday the St. Croix River rushed so intensely, spectators came out in the rain to document the flooded shorelines.
“I haven’t seen it this high since I was like 16 or 17, so even I had to come out and play lookie-loo with the camera,” resident Morgan Green said.
While it’s safe to look at from shore, getting in isn’t an option.
“There’s no reason to be out in the river right now, whether you’re in a private boat, canoe or kayak,” Amy Frischmon of Taylors Falls Scenic Boat Tours and Canoe and Kayak Rentals said. “The national parks service has closed all of their access points all the way north of highway 70 to Stillwater.”
Frischmon stopped renting small boats yesterday, and now large riverboat cruises are docked, too.
“There is no safe way to get people onto our boats, to be able to operate the boats,” she said.
In St. Croix Falls, authorities are recommending no boating, kayaking or canoeing both above and below the dam. In Stillwater, the St. Croix is expected to exceed 683 feet, prompting the DNR to enforce a no-wake zone from Taylors Falls to the Mississippi River in Prescott, Wisconsin.
Despite the dangers in the water, visitors are welcome to take in the views safely from shore.
“Taylors Falls is still open. All the businesses are here and ready to service our guests,” Frischmon said.
She hopes canoes, kayaks and river cruises will be back in the water by Monday.
“Once the water peaks and starts to receded, we will open as soon as we can operate safely,” she said.
This weekend is Lumberjack Days in Stillwater. Officials with the event tell us everything is still on, and the music stages have been safely moved to nearby areas not affected by the flooding.