Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area

Lawrence Unit

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Area and County

Scott County





Approximately 1,967 acres

Printable map

Printable Map with GPS coordinates


Trail Center
N44 39.124, W93 42.981

Hiking Trails

The Minnesota Valley State Trail passes
througn the site.

The Minnesota River State Water Trail passes along the northern border of the site.


No hunting

Ecological Classification


Eastern Broadleaf Forest Province

Ecological Classification


Minnesota & NE Iowa Morainal


Big Woods

Land Type Association(s)

Hamburg Moraine

Le Sueur Alluvial Plain

Native Plant Communities1

Cattail - Sedge Marsh (Northern)

Mesic Prairie (Southern)

Pin Oak - Bur Oak Woodland

Sedge Meadow

Spikerush - Bur Reed Marsh (Northern)

Wet Prairie (Southern)

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Minnesota DNR









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  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit

Samuel B. Strait House

  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit

Riverbottom Forest

  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit


  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit
  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit


  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit
  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit    

Beason Lake

  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit

Minnesota River

  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit
  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit    

Channel Catfish

  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit    


  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit   Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit
  Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area - Lawrence Unit    





  Hiking Club: Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area, April 2012
  Hiking Club: Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area, April 2012  

18 APR 2012; Park #8, 4.0 miles

  Minnesota Valley State Park
Richard Sanders
  Minnesota Valley State Park  

Minnesota Valley State Park





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MinnesotaSeasons.com Observations



boreal chorus frog (Pseudacris maculata)

northern leopard frog (Rana pipiens)

northern leopard frog


Twelve bird species with conservation status in Minnesota and one tracked species have been seen on at least one of the units of this SRA:



Henslow’s Sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii)

Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus)


Special concern

Acadian Flycatcher (Empidonax virescens)

American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea)

Forster’s Tern (Sterna forsteri)

Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)

Purple Martin (Progne subis)

Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)



Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)


Minnesota DNR Bird checklist (all units)


American Coot (Fulica americana)

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)

American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)

Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)

Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

Blue-winged Teal (Anas discors)

Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)

Bufflehead (Bucephala albeola)

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)

Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina)

Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)

Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)

Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)

Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)

Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus)

Eastern Wood-peewee (Contopus virens)

Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)

Fox Sparrow (Passerella iliaca)

Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Great Crested Flycatcher (Myiarchus crinitus)

Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus)

Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus)

Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis)

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)

Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)

Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)

Olive-sided Flycatcher (Contopus cooperi)

Ovenbird (Seiurus aurocapillus)

Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus)

Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus)

Ring-necked Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)

Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis)

Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)

Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)

Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus)

White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)

White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)

Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius)

Yellow-rumped Warbler (Setophaga coronata)

American Coot

American Robin

Bald Eagle

Brown-headed Cowbird

Canada Goose

Dark-eyed Junco


Mourning Dove

Red-winged Blackbird

Song Sparrow

Tundra Swan

White-breasted Nuthatch

Fungi and Lichens

Black Knot (Apiosporina morbosa)

False Tinder Fungus (Phellinus igniarius)

Yellow Morel (Morchella esculenta)

False Tinder Fungus

Insects and Arachnids

common green darner (Anax junius)

eastern boxelder bug (Boisea trivittata)

eastern comma (Polygonia comma)

goldenrod gall fly (Eurosta solidaginis)

eastern comma


American beaver (Castor canadensis)

eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)

thirteen-lined ground squirrel (Ictidomys tridecemlineatus)

whitetail deer (Odocoileus virginianus)

whitetail deer


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


Special concern

rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium var. yuccifolium)


Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas (Bell Museum of Natural History) Plant List


Plants frequently found in:

Cattail - Sedge Marsh (Northern) MRn83a

Mesic Prairie (Southern) UPs23a

Pin Oak - Bur Oak Woodland FDs37b

Sedge Meadow WMn82b

Spikerush - Bur Reed Marsh (Northern) MRn93b

Wet Prairie (Southern) WPs54b



American basswood (Tilia americana var. americana)

American cow parsnip (Heracleum sphondylium ssp. montanum)

American elm (Ulmus americana)

asparagus (Asparagus officinalis)

Aunt Lucy (Ellisia nyctelea)

black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis)

black walnut (Juglans nigra)

black-seeded plantain (Plantago rugelii var. rugelii)

boxelder (Acer negundo var. negundo)

bristly buttercup (Ranunculus hispidus)

bristly greenbrier (Smilax tamnoides)

bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa var. macrocarpa)

Canada moonseed (Menispermum canadense)

Canadian horseweed (Conyza canadensis)

Canadian woodnettle (Laportea canadensis)

chokecherry (Prunus virginiana var. virginiana)

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 motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca ssp. cardiaca)

common mullein (Verbascum thapsus ssp. thapsus)

common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia)

cursed crowfoot (Ranunculus sceleratus var. multifidus)

cursed crowfoot (Ranunculus sceleratus var. sceleratus)

cut-leaved coneflower (Rudbeckia laciniata var. laciniata)

early meadow rue (Thalictrum dioicum)

eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana var. virginiana)

Emory’s sedge (Carex emoryi)

field horsetail (Equisetum arvense)

field pennycress (Thlaspi arvense)

fragrant bedstraw (Galium triflorum)

garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata)

giant ragweed (Ambrosia trifida var. trifida)

gray dogwood (Cornus racemosa)

green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica)

ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea)

hedge bindweed (Calystegia sepium)

ironwood (Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana)

Jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum)

kidney-leaved buttercup (Ranunculus abortivus)

large yellow water crowfoot (Ranunculus flabellaris)

Morrow’s honeysuckle (Lonicera morrowii)

Muhlenberg’s sedge (Carex muehlenbergii var. muehlenbergii)

nannyberry (Viburnum lentago)

northern hackberry (Celtis occidentalis)

northern pin oak (Quercus ellipsoidalis)

northern prickly ash (Zanthoxylum americanum)

northern red oak (Quercus rubra)

Pennsylvania bitter-cress (Cardamine pensylvanica)

Philadelphia fleabane (Erigeron philadelphicus var. philadelphicus)

plains cottonwood (Populus deltoides ssp. molinifera)

pussy willow (Salix discolor)

quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides)

red clover (Trifolium pratense)

red elderberry (Sambucus racemosa var. racemosa)

red osier dogwood (Cornus sericea ssp. sericea)

rock elm (Ulmus thomasii)

shepherd’s purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris)

Siberian elm (Ulmus pumila)

silky dogwood (Cornus amomum ssp. obliqua)

silver maple (Acer saccharinum)

smooth sumac (Rhus glabra)

smooth yellow violet (Viola pubescens var. scabriuscula)

southern blue flag (Iris virginica var. shrevei)

staghorn sumac (Rhus typhina)

stinging nettle (Urtica dioica ssp. gracilis)

Tartarian honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica)

Virginia waterleaf (Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum)

white clover (Trifolium repens)

wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis)

wild cucumber (Echinocystis lobata)

wild ginger (Asarum canadense)

wild grape (Vitis riparia)

winter cress (Barbarea vulgaris)

woodbine (Parthenocissus vitacea)

yellow wood sorrel (Oxalis stricta)


Acer negundo var. negundo (boxelder)

Acer saccharinum (silver maple)

Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)

Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed)

Ambrosia trifida var. trifida (giant ragweed)

Aquilegia canadensis (wild columbine)

Arctium minus (common burdock)

Arisaema triphyllum (Jack-in-the-pulpit)

Asarum canadense (wild ginger)

Asparagus officinalis (asparagus)

Barbarea vulgaris (winter cress)

Calystegia sepium (hedge bindweed)

Capsella bursa-pastoris (shepherd’s purse)

Cardamine pensylvanica (Pennsylvania bitter-cress)

Carex emoryi (Emory’s sedge)

Carex muehlenbergii var. muehlenbergii (Muhlenberg’s sedge)

Celtis occidentalis (northern hackberry)

Conyza canadensis (Canadian horseweed)

Cornus amomum ssp. obliqua (silky dogwood)

Cornus racemosa (gray dogwood)

Cornus sericea ssp. sericea (red osier dogwood)

Echinocystis lobata (wild cucumber)

Ellisia nyctelea (Aunt Lucy)

Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)

Erigeron philadelphicus var. philadelphicus (Philadelphia fleabane)

Fraxinus pennsylvanica (green ash)

Galium aparine (cleavers)

Galium triflorum (fragrant bedstraw)

Glechoma hederacea (ground ivy)

Heracleum sphondylium ssp. montanum (American cow parsnip)

Hydrophyllum virginianum var. virginianum (Virginia waterleaf)

Iris virginica var. shrevei (southern blue flag)

Juglans nigra (black walnut)

Juniperus virginiana var. virginiana (eastern redcedar)

Laportea canadensis (Canadian woodnettle)

Leonurus cardiaca ssp. cardiaca (common motherwort)

Lonicera morrowii (Morrow’s honeysuckle)

Lonicera tatarica (Tartarian honeysuckle)

Menispermum canadense (Canada moonseed)

Oenothera biennis (common evening primrose)

Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana (ironwood)

Oxalis stricta (yellow wood sorrel)

Parthenocissus vitacea (woodbine)

Plantago rugelii var. rugelii (black-seeded plantain)

Populus deltoides ssp. molinifera (plains cottonwood)

Populus tremuloides (quaking aspen)

Prunus virginiana var. virginiana (chokecherry)

Quercus ellipsoidalis (northern pin oak)

Quercus macrocarpa var. macrocarpa (bur oak)

Quercus rubra (northern red oak)

Ranunculus abortivus (kidney-leaved buttercup)

Ranunculus flabellaris (large yellow water crowfoot)

Ranunculus hispidus (bristly buttercup)

Ranunculus sceleratus var. multifidus (cursed crowfoot)

Ranunculus sceleratus var. sceleratus (cursed crowfoot)

Rhamnus cathartica (common buckthorn)

Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)

Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)

Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)

Rudbeckia laciniata var. laciniata (cut-leaved coneflower)

Salix discolor (pussy willow)

Sambucus racemosa var. racemosa (red elderberry)

Smilax tamnoides (bristly greenbrier)

Taraxacum officinale ssp. officinale (common dandelion)

Thalictrum dioicum (early meadow rue)

Thlaspi arvense (field pennycress)

Tilia americana var. americana (American basswood)

Trifolium pratense (red clover)

Trifolium repens (white clover)

Ulmus americana (American elm)

Ulmus pumila (Siberian elm)

Ulmus thomasii (rock elm)

Urtica dioica ssp. gracilis (stinging nettle)

Verbascum thapsus ssp. thapsus (common mullein)

Viburnum lentago (nannyberry)

Viola pubescens var. scabriuscula (smooth yellow violet)

Viola sororia (common blue violet)

Vitis riparia (wild grape)

Zanthoxylum americanum (northern prickly ash)

American cow parsnip

black raspberry

bur oak (var. macrocarpa)


common evening primrose

common mullein

cut-leaved coneflower

early meadow rue

fragrant bedstraw

Morrow’s honeysuckle


northern prickly ash

red elderberry

Tartarian honeysuckle

Virginia waterleaf

white clover

wild columbine

wild grape

winter cress


common garter snake (Thamnophis sirtalis)

common garter snake




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