Construction begins soon on new route for Hallaway Hill Overlook Trail, Maplewood State Park

The scenic Hallaway Hill Overlook Trail in Maplewood State Park, near Pelican Rapids, will undergo construction after Labor Day to re-route the trail to address erosion issues, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. 

Construction, which will occur Mon. – Thurs., 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., is expected to take about a month. The trail will remain open during construction.

The new alignment will provide for a more gradual, safer and more sustainable route to the top of the most popular hiking trail in Maplewood State Park. It will also offer hikers spectacular views of the scenic hardwood hills, lakes and prairies of west-central Minnesota that make the park a popular hiking and fall color destination.

“The trail has been heavily used,” said Don DelGreco, Maplewood State Park manager.  “Rerouting the trail is necessary to address safety issues, as erosion is threatening the integrity of the existing trail.”

The new trail surface will be crushed rock and gravel. Hikers will enjoy an improved trail alignment that permits greater access through a series of strategically designed switchbacks and rest areas as they make their way to the scenic overlook.

DelGreco said that many new and extensive panoramic views will be available for hikers as the trail winds and traverses through colorful prairies and shady hardwood forests on its route to the “top-of-hill.”

Funding for this project is from the Parks and Trails Fund, created after voters approved the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment in November 2008. The Parks and Trails Fund receives 14.25 percent of the sales tax revenue and may only be spent to support parks and trails of regional or statewide significance.

An additional $15,000 in funding was provided by the Friends of Maplewood State Park.

“The Friends of Maplewood have been a treasured partner with Maplewood State Park,” said DelGreco. “They have been our partners on many projects and activities in the park, such as the Josh Hanson Memorial Picnic Shelter, Sugar Shack and Leaf Days and maple-syrup celebrations.”

For more information on the project, contact Don DelGreco, park manager, 218-863-8383, don.delgreco@state.mn.us.

For more information on the Legacy Parks and Trails Fund, visit legacy.leg.mn/funds/parks-trails-fund.