Franconia Bluffs SNA

 

 

     
 
About
 
 

Ownership

 
 

Minnesota DNR logo

 
     
 

Links

 
 

Minnesota DNR

The Trust for Public Land

 
     
 

Overview

 
 

 

 
     
 

History

 
 

This site was first designated a Scientific and Natural Area in June, 2008.

 
     
 

Management

 
 

On October 1, 2011, volunteers with Great River Greening planted acorns on a cleared, 10-acre plot on the bluff top at the east unit. They also planted oak seedlings in a 1-acre section at the south end of the plot. The goal of the project is to expand the the oak bluffland forest to the 10-acre plot.

In 2012, a high tensile wire deer fence was constructed around the oak woodland restoration. Red pines in the plantation at the west unit were marked for removal.

Future management plans include “cutting and spot-spraying exotic invasive woody and herbaceous species and the first phase of removal of pine-spruce plantations and associated erosion control on the bluff-tops prior to restoration of native forest.”

 
     
 

Comments

 
 

 

 
     
 
Location
 
 

Maps

 
 

Detail map (MN DNR)

 
         
 

Printable Map(s) with GPS coordinates

 
  Printable map      
         
 

Size

 
 

85.2 acres

 
         
 

Parking

 
 

East Unit

To access the east unit turn east on the gravel road by the wood SNA sign. After 50 yards the road forks, becoming two private driveways. Between the two driveways is a two track road leading 80 yards to a small parking area and a gate. Park near the gate and walk east on the two-track road to a large clearing.

N45 22.353, W92 42.291

West Unit

To access the west unit, park on the pull-off on the east side of Highway 95.

N45 22.016, W92 42.740

 
         
 

Driving Directions

  Area and County  
 

Get driving directions from Google Maps to this destination from any address, and send those directions to your phone.

   
          Chisago County  
          Central Minnesota  
     
 
Activities
 
 

Hiking Trails

 
 

No maintained trails

 
     
 

Hunting

 
 

All hunting. See Hunting and Trapping Regulations (MN DNR) for details.

 
     
 
Ecology
 
 

Ecological Classification

  Ecological Classification  
  Ecological Province    

Laurentian Mixed Forest Province

   
  Ecological Section    

Western Superior Uplands

   
  Ecological Subsection    

Mille Lacs Uplands

   
  Land Type Association    

Almelund Moraine

Chisago Moraine

   
             
 

Native Plant Communities*

   
 

Oak - (Red Maple) Woodland

Red Oak - Sugar Maple - Basswood - (Bitternut Hickory) Forest

Red Oak - White Oak - (Sugar Maple) Forest

   
  * Source: The Minnesota Biological Survey, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Ecological Resources      
         
 

Natural Features

     
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mosquitos

The ravines are steep sided and shielded from the slightest breeze even on windy days. DEET is a must.

 

Challenging Ravine

The ravine directly east of the parking area at the west unit is challenging. It begins as a garbage dump, apparently used for decades, then transitions into a dense prickly ash thicket that is almost impassible. Those who attempt it will come away with a few bloody scratches to help them remember the experience.

           
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

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MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
 

East Unit

 
 

Parking

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
 

Wood Routed Sign

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
 

Deer Enclosure

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
    Franconia Bluffs SNA      
           
 

Oak - (Red Maple) Woodland

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA      
           
 

Red Oak - White Oak - (Sugar Maple) Forest

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
     
 

West Unit

 
 

Parking

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
    Franconia Bluffs SNA      
           
 

Pine Plantation

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
 

Red Oak - Sugar Maple - Basswood - (Bitternut Hickory) Forest

 
    Franconia Bluffs SNA   Franconia Bluffs SNA  
           
    Franconia Bluffs SNA      

 

Camera

     
 
Slideshows
 
 
     
     

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

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MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
 

Visits

2/22/2011

  9/5/2011   7/6/2013        
 
 

Birds

 
 

Minnesota DNR Bird checklist

 
 

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)

Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)

Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina)

Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)

Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea)

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)

Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapilla)

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)

Ring-necked Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)

 

Blue Jay

Northern Cardinal

Song Sparrow

 
 

Fungi and Lichens

 
 

Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas Lichens List

 
  Oat Crown Rust (Puccinia coronata f. sp. avenae)   Oat Crown Rust  
 

Insects and Arachnids

 
 

American dog tick (Dermacentor variabilis)

common whitetail (Plathemis lydia)

goldenrod gall fly (Eurosta solidaginis)

great spangled fritillary (Speyeria cybele)

Halloween pennant (Celithemis eponina)

Leconte’s haploa (Haploa lecontei)

maple spindle-gall mite (Vasates aceriscrumena)

mourning cloak (Nymphalis antiopa)

pearl crescent (Phyciodes tharos)

red admiral (Vanessa atalanta)

twelve-spotted skimmer (Libellula pulchella)

white admiral (Limenitis arthemis arthemis)

white snakeroot leaf miner (Liriomyza eupatoriella)

widow skimmer (Libellula luctuosa)

 

male common whitetail

great spangled fritillary

Leconte’s haploa

widow skimmer

 
 

Mammals

 
  whitetail deer (Odocoileus virginianus)   whitetail deer  
 

Plants

 
 

Plants frequently found in:

Oak - (Red Maple) Woodland FDs37a

Red Oak - Sugar Maple - Basswood - (Bitternut Hickory) Forest MHs38c

Red Oak - White Oak - (Sugar Maple) Forest MHs37b

     
 

 

alsike clover (Trifolium hybridum)

American basswood (Tilia americana var. americana)

American bittersweet (Celastrus scandens)

American elderberry (Sambucus canadensis)

American elm (Ulmus americana)

American hazel (Corylus americana)

American hog peanut (Amphicarpaea bracteata var. bracteata)

American hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana)

American lopseed (Phryma leptostachya)

American red raspberry (Rubus idaeus ssp. strigosus)

American spikenard (Aralia racemosa ssp. racemosa)

American vetch (Vicia americana ssp. americana)

Amur maple (Acer ginnala)

annual fleabane (Erigeron annuus)

asparagus (Asparagus officinalis)

Balkan catchfly (Silene csereii)

bigleaf aster (Eurybia macrophylla)

bird’s-foot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus var. corniculatus)

bitternut hickory (Carya cordiformis)

black bindweed (Fallopia convolvulus)

black medick (Medicago lupulina)

black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis)

black walnut (Juglans nigra)

black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima)

black-seeded plantain (Plantago rugelii var. rugelii)

bland sweet cicely (Osmorhiza claytonii)

bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis)

blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides)

blue vervain (Verbena hastata var. scabra)

boxelder (Acer negundo var. negundo)

bristly greenbrier (Smilax tamnoides)

bull thistle (Cirsium vulgare)

bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa var. macrocarpa)

Canada mayflower (Maianthemum canadense)

Canada moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense)

Canadian clearweed (Pilea pumila)

Canadian honewort (Cryptotaenia canadensis)

Canadian woodnettle (Laportea canadensis)

cleavers (Galium aparine)

common blue violet (Viola sororia)

common buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica)

common burdock (Arctium minus)

common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale ssp. officinale)

common evening primrose (Oenothera biennis)

common false Solomon’s seal (Maianthemum racemosum var. racemosum)

common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

common motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca ssp. cardiaca)

common mullein (Verbascum thapsus ssp. thapsus)

common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia)

common speedwell (Veronica officinalis)

common strawberry (Fragaria virginiana)

common yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

curly dock (Rumex crispus)

cut-leaved coneflower (Rudbeckia laciniata var. laciniata)

drooping trillium (Trillium flexipes)

early meadow-rue (Thalictrum dioicum)

eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana var. virginiana)

field horsetail (Equisetum arvense)

giant foxtail (Setaria faberi)

giant ragweed (Ambrosia trifida)

green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica)

ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea)

hairy Solomon’s seal (Polygonatum pubescens)

harebell (Campanula rotundifolia)

hedge bindweed (Calystegia sepium ssp. angulata)

hoary alyssum (Berteroa incana)

jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum)

kidney-leaved buttercup (Ranunculus abortivus)

large-flowered bellwort (Uvularia grandiflora)

Lindley’s aster (Symphyotrichum ciliolatum)

Maryland black snakeroot (Sanicula marilandica)

Morrow’s honeysuckle (Lonicera morrowii)

musk thistle (Carduus nutans)

northern bedstraw (Galium boreale)

northern blue flag (Iris versicolor)

northern lady fern (Athyrium filix-femina var. angustum)

northern maidenhair (Adiantum pedatum)

northern pin oak (Quercus ellipsoidalis)

northern prickly ash (Zanthoxylum americanum)

northern red oak (Quercus rubra)

orange daylily (Hemerocallis fulva)

orange hawkweed (Pilosella aurantiaca)

ostrich fern (Matteuccia struthiopteris var. pensylvanica)

pagoda dogwood (Cornus alternifolia)

Parlin’s pussytoes (Antennaria parlinii ssp. fallax)

Philadelphia fleabane (Erigeron philadelphicus var. philadelphicus)

pineapple-weed (Matricaria discoidea)

plains cottonwood (Populus deltoides ssp. molinifera)

pointed-leaved tick-trefoil (Desmodium glutinosum)

prairie fleabane (Erigeron strigosus)

prairie peppergrass (Lepidium densiflorum)

purple-stem angelica (Angelica atropurpurea)

quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides)

rattlesnake fern (Botrypus virginianus)

red clover (Trifolium pratense)

red elderberry (Sambucus racemosa var. racemosa)

red maple (Acer rubrum var. rubrum)

red pine (Pinus resinosa)

reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea)

rough cinquefoil (Potentilla norvegica)

round-lobed hepatica (Anemone americana)

rue anemone (Thalictrum thalictroides)

Scotch pine (Pinus sylvestris)

scouring rush horsetail (Equisetum hyemale ssp. affine)

sensitive fern (Onoclea sensibilis)

sharp-lobed hepatica (Anemone acutiloba)

shining bedstraw (Galium concinnum)

shinleaf (Pyrola elliptica)

skunk cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus)

slippery elm (Ulmus rubra)

spotted touch-me-not (Impatiens capensis)

spreading dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium)

staghorn sumac (Rhus typhina)

starry false Solomon’s seal (Maianthemum stellatum)

stinging nettle (Urtica dioica ssp. gracilis)

sugar maple (Acer saccharum ssp. saccharum)

sulphur cinquefoil (Potentilla recta)

tall buttercup (Ranunculus acris var. acris)

tall thimbleweed (Anemone virginiana)

timothy (Phleum pratense)

twoleaf miterwort (Mitella diphylla)

upright carrionflower (Smilax ecirrhata)

Virginia stickseed (Hackelia virginiana)

Virginia waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum)

western poison ivy (Toxicodendron rydbergii)

white avens (Geum canadense)

white baneberry (Actaea pachypoda)

white campion (Silene latifolia ssp. alba)

white clover (Trifolium repens)

white oak (Quercus alba)

white rattlesnake root (Nabalus albus)

white snakeroot (Ageratina altissima var. altissima)

white spruce (Picea glauca)

white sweet clover (Melilotus albus)

wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

wild cucumber (Echinocystis lobata)

wild geranium (Geranium maculatum)

wild ginger (Asarum canadense)

wild grape (Vitis riparia)

wild parsnip (Pastinaca sativa)

wild sarsaparilla (Aralia nudicaulis)

winter cress (Barbarea vulgaris)

woodbine (Parthenocissus vitacea)

woodland strawberry (Fragaria vesca ssp. americana)

yellow goat’s beard (Tragopogon dubius)

yellow sweet clover (Melilotus officinalis)

yellow wood sorrel (Oxalis stricta)

zigzag goldenrod (Solidago flexicaulis)

 

Acer ginnala (Amur maple)

Acer negundo var. negundo (boxelder)

Acer rubrum var. rubrum (red maple)

Acer saccharum ssp. saccharum (sugar maple)

Achillea millefolium (common yarrow)

Actaea pachypoda (white baneberry)

Adiantum pedatum (northern maidenhair)

Ageratina altissima var. altissima (white snakeroot)

Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed)

Ambrosia trifida (giant ragweed)

Amphicarpaea bracteata var. bracteata (American hog peanut)

Anemone acutiloba (sharp-lobed hepatica)

Anemone americana (round-lobed hepatica)

Anemone virginiana (tall thimbleweed)

Angelica atropurpurea (purple-stem angelica)

Antennaria parlinii ssp. fallax (Parlin’s pussytoes)

Apocynum androsaemifolium (spreading dogbane)

Aquilegia canadensis (wild columbine)

Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla)

Aralia racemosa ssp. racemosa (American spikenard)

Arctium minus (common burdock)

Arisaema triphyllum (jack-in-the-pulpit)

Asarum canadense (wild ginger)

Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)

Asparagus officinalis (asparagus)

Athyrium filix-femina var. angustum (northern lady fern)

Barbarea vulgaris (winter cress)

Berteroa incana (hoary alyssum)

Botrypus virginianus (rattlesnake fern)

Calystegia sepium. ssp. angulata (hedge bindweed)

Campanula rotundifolia (harebell)

Carduus nutans (musk thistle)

Carya cordiformis (bitternut hickory)

Caulophyllum thalictroides (blue cohosh)

Celastrus scandens (American bittersweet)

Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle)

Cirsium vulgare (bull thistle)

Cornus alternifolia (pagoda dogwood)

Corylus americana (American hazel)

Cryptotaenia canadensis (Canadian honewort)

Desmodium glutinosum (pointed-leaved tick-trefoil)

Echinocystis lobata (wild cucumber)

Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)

Equisetum hyemale ssp. affine (scouring rush horsetail)

Erigeron annuus (annual fleabane)

Erigeron philadelphicus var. philadelphicus (Philadelphia fleabane)

Erigeron strigosus (prairie fleabane)

Eurybia macrophylla (bigleaf aster)

Fallopia convolvulus (black bindweed)

Fragaria vesca ssp. americana (woodland strawberry)

Fragaria virginiana (common strawberry)

Fraxinus pennsylvanica (green ash)

Galium aparine (cleavers)

Galium boreale (northern bedstraw)

Galium concinnum (shining bedstraw)

Geranium maculatum (wild geranium)

Geum canadense (white avens)

Glechoma hederacea (ground ivy)

Hackelia virginiana (Virginia stickseed)

Hemerocallis fulva (orange daylily)

Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum (Virginia waterleaf)

Impatiens capensis (spotted touch-me-not)

Iris versicolor (northern blue flag)

Juglans nigra (black walnut)

Juniperus virginiana var. virginiana (eastern redcedar)

Laportea canadensis (Canadian woodnettle)

Leonurus cardiaca ssp. cardiaca (common motherwort)

Lepidium densiflorum (prairie peppergrass)

Lonicera morrowii (Morrow’s honeysuckle)

Lotus corniculatus var. corniculatus (bird’s-foot trefoil)

Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)

Maianthemum racemosum var. racemosum (common false Solomon’s seal)

Maianthemum stellatum (starry false Solomon’s seal)

Matricaria discoidea (pineapple-weed)

Matteuccia struthiopteris var. pensylvanica (ostrich fern)

Medicago lupulina (black medick)

Melilotus albus (white sweet clover)

Melilotus officinalis (yellow sweet clover)

Menispermum canadense (Canada moonseed)

Mitella diphylla (twoleaf miterwort)

Nabalus albus (white rattlesnake root)

Oenothera biennis (common evening primrose)

Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)

Osmorhiza claytonii (bland sweet cicely)

Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana (American hophornbeam)

Oxalis stricta (yellow wood sorrel)

Parthenocissus vitacea (woodbine)

Pastinaca sativa (wild parsnip)

Phalaris arundinacea (reed canary grass)

Phleum pratense (timothy)

Phryma leptostachya (American lopseed)

Picea glauca (white spruce)

Pilea pumila (Canadian clearweed)

Pilosella aurantiaca (orange hawkweed)

Pinus resinosa (red pine)

Pinus sylvestris (Scotch pine)

Plantago rugelii var. rugelii (black-seeded plantain)

Polygonatum pubescens (hairy Solomon’s seal)

Populus deltoides ssp. molinifera (plains cottonwood)

Populus tremuloides (quaking aspen)

Potentilla norvegica (rough cinquefoil)

Potentilla recta (sulphur cinquefoil)

Pyrola elliptica (shinleaf)

Quercus alba (white oak)

Quercus ellipsoidalis (northern pin oak)

Quercus macrocarpa var. macrocarpa (bur oak)

Quercus rubra (northern red oak)

Ranunculus abortivus (kidney-leaved buttercup)

Ranunculus acris var. acris (tall buttercup)

Rhamnus cathartica (common buckthorn)

Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)

Rubus idaeus ssp. strigosus (American red raspberry)

Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)

Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima (black-eyed Susan)

Rudbeckia laciniata var. laciniata (cut-leaved coneflower)

Rumex crispus (curly dock)

Sambucus canadensis (American elderberry)

Sambucus racemosa var. racemosa (red elderberry)

Sanguinaria canadensis (bloodroot)

Sanicula marilandica (Maryland black snakeroot)

Setaria faberi (giant foxtail)

Silene csereii (Balkan catchfly)

Silene latifolia ssp. alba (white campion)

Smilax ecirrhata (upright carrionflower)

Smilax tamnoides (bristly greenbrier)

Solidago flexicaulis (zigzag goldenrod)

Symphyotrichum ciliolatum (Lindley’s aster)

Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)

Taraxacum officinale ssp. officinale (common dandelion)

Thalictrum dioicum (early meadow-rue)

Thalictrum thalictroides (rue anemone)

Tilia americana var. americana (American basswood)

Toxicodendron rydbergii (western poison ivy)

Tragopogon dubius (yellow goat’s beard)

Trifolium hybridum (alsike clover)

Trifolium pratense (red clover)

Trifolium repens (white clover)

Trillium flexipes (drooping trillium)

Ulmus americana (American elm)

Ulmus rubra (slippery elm)

Urtica dioica ssp. gracilis (stinging nettle)

Uvularia grandiflora (large-flowered bellwort)

Verbascum thapsus ssp. thapsus (common mullein)

Verbena hastata var. scabra (blue vervain)

Veronica officinalis (common speedwell)

Vicia americana ssp. americana (American vetch)

Viola sororia (common blue violet)

Vitis riparia (wild grape)

Zanthoxylum americanum (northern prickly ash)

 

alsike clover

American elderberry

American hog peanut (var. bracteata)

American vetch (var. americana)

annual fleabane

black bindweed

black raspberry

black-eyed Susan

blue cohosh

bur oak (var. macrocarpa)

common blue violet

common evening primrose

common false Solomon’s seal

common mullein

common yarrow

drooping trillium

giant foxtail

ground ivy

large-flowered bellwort

Morrow’s honeysuckle

musk thistle

orange daylily

orange hawkweed

pineapple-weed

red clover

red elderberry

rough cinquefoil

sharp-lobed hepatica

spotted touch-me-not

upright carrionflower

Virginia waterleaf

white baneberry

white clover

wild columbine

wild geranium

wild parsnip

woodland strawberry

yellow sweet clover

 

 
 

Reptiles

 
 

One reptile species with conservation status in Minnesota has been seen here:

Threatened

wood turtle (Glyptemys insculpta)

 

 

 

Binoculars


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