Lost 40 SNA






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Minnesota DNR

USDA Forest Service




Lost 40 SNA lies within the borders of the Big Fork State Forest. It is in the Blackduck Area of the Chippewa National Forest.
















USDA Forest Service Self-guided trail map

Detail map (MN DNR)


Printable Map(s) with GPS coordinates

  Printable map      



114 acres




N47 45.970, W94 5.065


Driving Directions

  Area and County  

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

          Itasca County  
          Northeast Minnesota  

Hiking Trails


Lost 40 Trail: 1 mile




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


Ecological Classification

  Ecological Classification  
  Ecological Province    

Laurentian Mixed Forest Province

  Ecological Section    

Northern Minnesota Drift & Lake Plains

  Ecological Subsection    

Chippewa Plains

  Land Type Association    

Bemidji Sand Plain

Blackduck Moraine


Native Plant Communities*


Not mapped (10/11/2021). Preliminary List:

Alder - (Maple - Loosestrife) Swamp

Alder Swamp / Wet Alder Swamp / Wet-Mesic Boreal Hardwood-Conifer Forest

Aspen Woodland/Forest Complex

White Pine - Red Pine Forest

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

Natural Features


Black spruce and tamarack bog, willow and alder marsh, red pine forest , spruce-fir forest, old-growth red and white pines.








Popular Site

Despite its remoteness, this is a well-used site. A visitor who walks slowly looking at plants, birds, and insects is likely to be passed several times by retired baby boomers power-walking this easy one-mile trail.







What’s in a Name?

The USDA Forest Service calls this area Lost Forty. That is the name used on their Website, on the signs at the site, and on the road sign leading to the sight. The Minnesota DNR calls it Lost 40 Scientific and Natural Area, both on their Website and on the interpretive sign at the site.











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MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos

Forest Road 2240

    Lost 40 SNA   Lost 40 SNA  
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    Lost 40 SNA   Lost 40 SNA  



  The Lost 40 with Kent Nerburn and Muffin
Tom Kanthak

Published on Aug 29, 2016

Kent Nerburn and my little Muffin at the Lost 40 in MN about 7 years ago.

  The Lost Forty
Julie Seykora

Published on May 25, 2013

Pictures of The Lost Forty (natural pine forest in northern MN and sounds of northern MN




Visitor Videos

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Other Videos
  Lost 40 Scientific and Natural Area Virtual Hike
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Dec 4, 2020

Lost 40 SNA owes its old-growth pine forest to a surveying error that occurred during the Public Land Survey in 1882. As the story goes, the pines were missed by loggers because surveyors mistakenly mapped the area as Coddington Lake. The site was re-surveyed and the error corrected in 1960. Shortly after, it was incorporated into Big Fork State Forest and its old trees have since endured.


  Lost Forty / Chippewa National Forest / Minnesota / Full Hiking Trail
Pine Forest

Published on Sep 6, 2014

This is the Lost Forty hiking trail in the Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota. This was an area that was supposed to be logged but due to a survey error in the late 1800's it was missed. It is located in a remote part of the state and doesnt get many visitors. However, it's a pretty impressive sight as some of those old pines take three people to get their arms around them. I'm convinced if this was located anywhere near Duluth or the North Shore it would be the most visited site in the state! This is a quiet walk thru video with no narration and uncut. The short loop part of the trail takes just over eight minutes and thats where most of the big pines are. I would highly recommend staying longer than eight minutes. The summer of 2014 was a record breaking buggy year and a nice big deer fly lands on the camera while filming just so I dont forget how buggy it was.




Visitor Sightings

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Maryellen Vedaa



What a beautiful place! The directions and signage are very poor. Coming from Gemell, you can't see the sign. We drove past it and wasn't til we were coming back that we saw the sign. Very small board buried in the brush. It's a beautiful place that should have better markings. So glad we went there. Thinking of returning when the leaves start to change.

MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings





Minnesota DNR Bird checklist

eBird Field Checklist

  Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)   Black-capped Chickadee  

Insects and Arachnids


autumn meadowhawk (Sympetrum vicinum)

gray comma (Polygonia progne)

  gray comma  


  American red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus)   American red squirrel  



One plant species with conservation status in Minnesota is found here:

Special Concern

creeping juniper (Juniperus horizontalis)


Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas and Minnesota Biological Survey Vegetation Releves Plant List


Plants frequently found in:

Alder - (Maple - Loosestrife) Swamp FPn73a

White Pine - Red Pine Forest FDn43a



American basswood (Tilia americana var. americana)

American bittersweet (Celastrus scandens)

American hophornbeam (Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana)

American red raspberry (Rubus idaeus ssp. strigosus)

Amur maple (Acer ginnala)

balsam fir (Abies balsamea var. balsamea)

balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera)

bigleaf aster (Eurybia macrophylla)

bland sweet cicely (Osmorhiza claytonii)

bluebead lily (Clintonia borealis)

bunchberry (Cornus canadensis)

Canada mayflower (Maianthemum canadense)

cleavers (Galium aparine)

common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale ssp. officinale)

common strawberry (Fragaria virginiana)

creeping juniper (Juniperus horizontalis)

early meadow-rue (Thalictrum dioicum)

eastern white pine (Pinus strobus)

fan clubmoss (Diphasiastrum digitatum)

flat-topped aster (Doellingeria umbellata)

green carpetweed (Mollugo verticillata)

ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea)

hairy goldenrod (Solidago hispida)

hairy Solomon’s seal (Polygonatum pubescens)

Indianpipe (Monotropa uniflora)

large-flowered bellwort (Uvularia grandiflora)

Lindley’s aster (Symphyotrichum ciliolatum)

lowbush blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium)

mountain maple (Acer spicatum)

northern bedstraw (Galium boreale)

northern red oak (Quercus rubra)

northern starflower (Lysimachia borealis)

paper birch (Betula papyrifera var. papyrifera)

prickly rose (Rosa acicularis ssp. sayi)

prickly tree clubmoss (Dendrolycopodium dendroideum)

quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides)

red maple (Acer rubrum var. rubrum)

red pine (Pinus resinosa)

rose twisted-stalk (Streptopus lanceolatus var. longipipes)

rough bedstraw (Galium asprellum)

round-leaved dogwood (Cornus rugosa)

round-lobed hepatica (Anemone americana)

running clubmoss (Lycopodium clavatum)

spreading dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium)

sugar maple (Acer saccharum ssp. saccharum)

Virginia waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum)

western bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum var. latiusculum)

white clover (Trifolium repens ssp. repens)

white rattlesnake root (Nabalus albus)

white spruce (Picea glauca)

wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

wild geranium (Geranium maculatum)

wild sarsaparilla (Aralia nudicaulis)

yellow avens (Geum aleppicum)


Abies balsamea var. balsamea (balsam fir)

Acer ginnala (Amur maple)

Acer rubrum var. rubrum (red maple)

Acer saccharum ssp. saccharum (sugar maple)

Acer spicatum (mountain maple)

Anemone americana (round-lobed hepatica)

Apocynum androsaemifolium (spreading dogbane)

Aquilegia canadensis (wild columbine)

Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla)

Betula papyrifera var. papyrifera (paper birch)

Celastrus scandens (American bittersweet)

Clintonia borealis (bluebead lily)

Cornus canadensis (bunchberry)

Cornus rugosa (round-leaved dogwood)

Dendrolycopodium dendroideum (prickly tree clubmoss)

Diphasiastrum digitatum (fan clubmoss)

Doellingeria umbellata (flat-topped aster)

Eurybia macrophylla (bigleaf aster)

Fragaria virginiana (common strawberry)

Galium aparine (cleavers)

Galium asprellum (rough bedstraw)

Galium boreale (northern bedstraw)

Geranium maculatum (wild geranium)

Geum aleppicum (yellow avens)

Glechoma hederacea (ground ivy)

Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum (Virginia waterleaf)

Juniperus horizontalis (creeping juniper)

Lycopodium clavatum (running clubmoss)

Lysimachia borealis (northern starflower)

Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)

Mollugo verticillata (green carpetweed)

Monotropa uniflora (Indianpipe)

Nabalus albus (white rattlesnake root)

Osmorhiza claytonii (bland sweet cicely)

Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana (American hophornbeam)

Picea glauca (white spruce)

Pinus resinosa (red pine)

Pinus strobus (eastern white pine)

Polygonatum pubescens (hairy Solomon’s seal)

Populus balsamifera (balsam poplar)

Populus tremuloides (quaking aspen)

Pteridium aquilinum var. latiusculum (western bracken fern)

Quercus rubra (northern red oak)

Rosa acicularis ssp. sayi (prickly rose)

Rubus idaeus ssp. strigosus (American red raspberry)

Solidago hispida (hairy goldenrod)

Streptopus lanceolatus var. longipipes (rose twisted-stalk)

Symphyotrichum ciliolatum (Lindley’s aster)

Taraxacum officinale ssp. officinale (common dandelion)

Thalictrum dioicum (early meadow-rue)

Tilia americana var. americana (American basswood)

Trifolium repens ssp. repens (white clover)

Uvularia grandiflora (large-flowered bellwort)

Vaccinium angustifolium (lowbush blueberry)


American basswood

American red raspberry

balsam fir

common dandelion

common strawberry

early meadow-rue

hairy goldenrod

large-flowered bellwort

Lindley’s aster

northern bedstraw

prickly rose

Virginia waterleaf

wild columbine

wild geranium





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