Within the national park there are no formal campgrounds. Two state parks that are within 50 miles of the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area have camping facilities. These are Afton State Park and William O’Brien State Park both east of the metropolitan area near the St. Croix River.
The Metropolitan Council lists regional parks that also have camping available.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources lists primitive campsites on islands in the Mississippi River.
The Superintendent's Compendium, dated April 4, 2010, is a body of rules that affect the use of nine islands and the Coldwater Unit of the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area. Please be familiar with these rules when camping on or visiting these National Park Service properties.
Did You Know?
At Lake Itasca, the elevation of the Mississippi River is 1,475 feet above sea level. It drops to sea level at the Gulf of Mexico. More than half of that drop occurs within the state of Minnesota.