Itasca State Park spans a total area of 32,690 acres of land that spreads across three Minnesota counties including Becker County, Clearwater County, and Hubbard County. Visitors can access the park by driving about 21 miles north of Park Rapids and 30 miles south of Bemidji on US 71. This Minnesota state park was established in 1891, making it the oldest park in the state. The park is governed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Several attractions make Itasca State Park a magnificent place to visit including Peace Pipe Vista, the Itasca Indian Mounds, Wegmann Cabin, and Preacher's Grove. The park also has over 100 lakes that are accessible to visitors for a wide array of recreational activities. Some of the favorite park activities include swimming, lake fishing, camping, hiking, bicycling, canoeing, cross-country skiing, boating (speed limit restrictions), snowmobiling, nature programs, snowshoeing, and excursion boat tours.
The amenities in the park to facilitate these activities include a visitor center, flush toilets, pontoon and paddleboat rentals, 11 cart-in campsites, 224 drive-in campsites, group camp, trails (including wheelchair-accessible trails), fishing pier, snack bar, lodge and restaurant, playground, picnic areas and shelters, volleyball court, boat and motor rentals, cabins, group center, warming house, 11 backpack campsites, swimming beach, canoe and kayak rentals, boat ramps, bike rentals, snowshoe rentals, showers, gift shops, historic site, and an observation tower.
Dogs are also allowed into Itasca State Park although dog owners may find that their access to some regions of the park may be restricted. For example, dogs are not permitted into park buildings. In areas of the park that dogs can access, the dog should always be on a six-foot leash. When the pooch is not leashed, then a secured cage should be used to hold the dog. Furthermore, dog owners should ensure that their dogs are well-behaved.