Minneopa State Park now has a free roaming herd of 11 Bison in a 330 acre natural prairie and it is breathtaking! Just shy of a dozen, the herd is expected to grow somewhere between 30 and 40. The Bison are genetically rare in the fact that they have not been breed with cattle. 3 of them are from the Minnesota Zoo, and the other 8 are from Blue Mounds State Park.
The state’s third oldest park, after Itasca and Interstate, is located just an hour and a half southwest of the Twin Cities which makes it an ideal distance for a small road trip. Fun/scary fact: apparently Bison can sprint three times faster than you can run, who would have guessed?! I’ll take their word for it.
With rising anticipation, we slowly entered the park, with all senses aware. There, just over a mile into the 2 mile drive, we spotted them, Bison! Slowly grazing through the middle of the park, the whole herd inched along little by little giving us ample time to admire them from a distance. Bison are an important part of our history and its quite a sight to see them in an environment that is so free.
Also make sure and check out the waterfalls in Minneopa State Park, which are right down the road from the Bison Drive. We were lucky enough to have the whole park to ourselves when we visited. The word Minneopa is from the Dakota language and means “water falling twice” in reference to the set of falls in the park.
See you next time!