The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources will need to close many roads and trails temporarily in state forests, state parks, recreation areas and wildlife management areas due to wet conditions.
Some roads and trails have already been closed.
Conditions are deteriorating rapidly, and many roads and trails are not firm enough to support vehicle traffic without being damaged. The temporary closures could remain in effect until sometime in May, depending on weather conditions.
“These are normal spring closures that happen when roads and trails become wet and fragile,” said Dave Schuller, state land programs supervisor for the DNR’s Forestry Division. “We ask that people use good judgment, obey the closures and check the DNR website for updates.”
Road and trail conditions can change quickly. The DNR advises people to check individual state park, state trail or state forest webpages before planning trips to avoid being surprised and disappointed by temporary closures.
Road and trail users should pay particular attention to state forest closures. Generally, all roads and trails in a particular forest will be closed, but not always. Those that can handle motor vehicle traffic will remain open but may be restricted by gross vehicle weight. Signs will be posted at entry points and parking lots.
Schuller noted that commercial loggers can continue to haul timber in the northern part of the state, which is not under Minnesota Department of Transportation spring load restrictions at this time. “In unrestricted parts of Minnesota we have asked loggers to voluntarily not haul during the warm parts of the day to protect forest roads,” he said, “and their compliance allows us to keep roads open longer.”
Online road and trail closure information is updated Thursdays by 2 p.m. Changes are added as soon as possible to the DNR website. Signs may be in place before the website is updated. All signs must be obeyed.
Road and trail closure information is also available by contacting the DNR Information Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-646-6367, 651-296-6157, (8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday).
For information on roads and trails on county land, contact the county directly.