Minnesota Rivers

River Rafting and Extreme Kayaking

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Paddle Minnesota rivers on a river rafting trip. Enjoy a drive along the Great River Road. Learn about our Wild and Scenic Rivers and where to do some extreme kayaking.

Minnesota rivers

There are over 8,000 "public and fishable" rivers in the state of Minnesota.

The "Mighty Mississippi River" runs from North to South in Minnesota. 

The Great River Road in Minnesota follows the Mississippi from its birth place at Lake Itasca in Itasca State Park all the way to the Iowa border. 

Mississippi River facts and interesting trivia.

Map of Mississippi River



Top 10 Rivers in Minnesota

1 Mississippi River 681.3 miles - From Itasca State Park the Mississippi flows through the towns Minnesota and it a popular attraction in the Twin Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis. In St. Paul you can learn about this great river at the Mississippi River Museum.

2 Red River 457.1 miles - Also called "The Red River of The North" flows through the Red River Valley from south to north in Minnesota and North Dakota. Enjoy canoeing the Red River on a visit to Moorhead and in Red River State Park

3 Minnesota River 370.6 miles - 

4 Rainy River 292.1 - 

5 Red Lake River 252.8 - 

6 Bigfork River 220.7 - 

7 St. Louis River 197.1 - 

8 Otter Tail River 195.7 - 

9 North Fork Crow River 178.3 - 

10 Wild Rice River 173.5 - 

Minnesota water trails and our seven designated "wild and scenic rivers" are those that offer some of the best places for canoeing and kayaking. Load up your adventure kayak and enjoy!

The Kettle River 



Taylors Falls River Photo

State Parks with Rivers in their name


Canoeing/Kayaking
Minnesota's Water Trails

Minnesota River Valley

Sea Kayak Adventures 

Adventure Kayak


Wild & Scenic Rivers Program: 7 designated river segments in Minnesota

Minnesota's Wild and Scenic Rivers Program assists communities in developing management plans that protect the scenic, recreational, natural, historical, and cultural values for which the rivers were originally designated.

The Minnesota State Wild & Scenic Rivers Program was established in 1973 to protect rivers which have outstanding natural, scenic, geographic, historic, cultural, and recreational values. Six rivers in Minnesota have segments which are designated as wild, scenic, or recreational under the state program.

In addition, the St. Croix River in Minnesota and Wisconsin is part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers Program, created in 1968. 

State-Designated River Segments

Mississippi River (from St. Cloud to Anoka)
Kettle River (in Pine County)
Rum River (in Mille Lacs, Sherburne, Isanti & Anoka Counties)
North Fork - Crow River (in Meeker County
Minnesota River (from Lac Qui Parle dam to Franklin)
Cannon River (from Faribault to the Mississippi River)
Federally-designated Wild & Scenic Rivers

St. Croix National Scenic Riverway - includes the upper 200 miles of the St. Croix River in Wisconsin and Minnesota (from headwater source to Taylors Falls), managed by the National Park Service.
Lower St. Croix National Scenic Riverway - includes the lower 52 miles of the St. Croix River along the Minnesota/Wisconsin border (from Taylors Falls to Prescott), managed cooperatively by the National Park Service, Minnesota DNR, and Wisconsin DNR.

Mississippi River in Central Minnesota

Minnesota River Mississippi

Minnesota Lakes and Rivers


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