After my hike at Charles Lindbergh State Park I headed south on US10, headed for Lake Maria. When I arrived I checked in at the park office only to discover that all the backpacking campsites were taken for the night. At this point I wasn't sure what I would do, but decided that since I had driven this far I may as well go for a hike.
I decided my hike would be a combination of the 2 mile Hiking Club hike and the 4.5 mile hike in our 50 Hikes in Minnesota guide book. Luckily the trails were not as swampy as those at Lindbergh State Park and so there were less mosquitoes. I finished the Hiking Club loop pretty quickly. Many of the same flowers I had seen at Lindbergh Park were blooming here. I stopped for a short break at Bjorkland Lake and then continued on.
Shortly after starting the guide book portion of my hike I headed up to Anderson Hill, the highest point in the park with a bench and some nice views.
The I moved on through a small section of old growth forest,
eventually finding myself at the park's namesake Lake Maria.
It was a short hike along a section of road and some trail back to where I had started.
Once back at the car I had to decide what to do for the night. I had accomplished everything I had planned for the weekend in just one day, but it seemed like a lot of driving to head home. I looked at the Minnesota atlas and decided to head to a county park I saw labeled on the map to see if they had any campsites available. As I drove to the county park I saw a sign for a commercial campground and decided to stay for the night despite the fact that it was one of the most run down looking places I'd ever set eyes on. Needless to say I don't plan on returning to Wapiti Park Campground anytime soon. There is an interesting story in the news about the campground though.