Plan Your Visit
The pipestone quarries are a sacred site for many American Indians. For centuries, tribes across North America traveled to this site to quarry red pipestone for making pipes and effigies from the easily carved material. Today, they still travel long distances to quarry this sacred stone and continue the tradition of pipemaking. Red pipestone is a valuable spiritual resource to many American Indians.
Pipestone National Monument offers an opportunity to explore unique cultural and natural resources. View active quarry pits where American Indians continue the traditions of the past by quarrying pipestone. Continue with the nature walk on the Circle Trail to see historical markers, unique quartzite rock formations, and Winnewissa Falls. The quarries are surrounded with many varieties of flowers and grasses growing in the native tallgrass prairie. See Things to Do.
The park grounds are open year-round. Entrance fees are collected at the visitor center, and are required for accessing any park feature including the Visitor Center, the Circle Trail, and the Three Maidens picnic area. Visitor Center hours vary seasonally.
For information on bringing pets, using wheelchairs, safety, and weather, see Things to Know Before You Come.
Pipestone National Monument is located in Southwestern Minnesota. See Directions.
Did You Know?
George Catlin was the first European-American to visit the pipestone quarries at Pipestone National Monument in 1836. A geologist dubbed the soft clay stone "Catlinite" after Catlin sent it to him for analysis. More...