Boat Launch Alternatives to William O'Brien State Park

William O’Brien State Park has begun construction on a major improvement project focused on upgrading aging amenities and increasing accessibility for visitors. The Day Use Area survey work and demolition is beginning now. Park staff will be removing and replacing two very outdated restroom buildings and the central picnic shelter. The parking lot will move further away from Lake Alice to improve pedestrian safety and to add green space next to the lake. This will create better stormwater management and more picnicking opportunities near the beach. The beach will be expanded, and accessibility to the water will be improved. We’ll also add an accessible canoe and kayak launch on the lake. 

In the coming months, additional work will include Riverside Trail upgrades, accessible campsites and shower building improvements in Riverway Campground, Amphitheater improvements, Park Office improvements, and more.

Construction requires the lower portion of the park near Lake Alice and the St. Croix River to close to visitors, and it will remain closed through early 2025. Areas that are now closed:

  • Mondale Day Use Area
  • St. Croix River public water access
  • Lake Alice swimming beach
  • Riverway campground
  • Riverside group camp
  • Riverside trail

The majority of the park will remain open to visitors during construction. Ongoing updates will be available on the park website.

 

Public Water Access Closed Through Early 2025

As spring arrives, be aware that this closure includes the St. Croix River public water access within the state park, which will be closed to all forms of watercraft use during the 2024 season.

For those looking to enjoy the St. Croix River near William O’Brien State Park, Minnesota Department of Resources recommends the following alternative public water accesses:

  •          Interstate State Park boat ramp – 408 Milltown Rd., Taylors Falls
  •          Franconia Landing – 29001 Summer St., Franconia Township
  •          Osceola Landing - 19351 Osceola Rd., Shafer
  •          Log House Landing – 16971 205th St. N., Scandia
  •          Somerset Landing – 261 Marine Rd., Somerset, WI
  •          St. Croix Boomsite Landing – 9134 Highway 95, Stillwater

o   Note: Upstream travel is not allowed north of the Soo Line High Bridge to prevent the spread of zebra mussels.

For the latest updates about construction at William O’Brien State Park, please visit: www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/william-obrien-accessibility-improvements.html.