View all facilities

Rapidan Dam Park & Campground

Admission Fee

Overnight primitive tent camping sites are available for $20 per night. Pop-up tent campers are allowed (size restriction).

Other Link Park Brochure & Map


  1. Drinking Water
  2. Fire Rings / Grills
  3. Fishing
  4. Horseshoe Pits
  5. Nature Trail
  6. Picnic Shelters
  7. Picnic Tables
  8. Picnicking
  9. Play Equipment
  10. Playground
  11. Resident Caretakers
  12. Restrooms
  13. Tent Camping Sites

 About the Park
The Rapidan Dam Park is located off of County Road 9, next to the Rapidan Dam. The 38 acres of riverfront property provides public access to the Blue Earth River at the Dam. This stretch of river is one of the most natural and scenic areas in Southern Minnesota, including views of rock bluffs, wooded hills, rapids and waterfalls on side streams. It is a largely undisturbed remnant of the "Big Woods" of Southern Minnesota.

Part of the land is used as a canoe launch, while the rest remains undeveloped conservation land. The land is ideal for fishing, hiking, and primitive camping with tents and pop-up tent campers (size restrictions). Due to the nature of it's acquisition, RV's and full-sized pop-up campers are not allowed.  It is equipped with one picnic shelter that can be reserved.  The park also has a Horseshoe Pit.  This park also provides a unique destination for the Red Jacket Trail.


View a listing of the contributors who helped make Rapidan Dam Park possible.

Camping & Park Use Guidelines

  • The park is open from 7:00 am to 9:00 pm from April 1 to October 31. Overnight primitive tent camping sites are available for $20 per night.   Pop-up tent campers are allowed (size restriction).  Call (507) 546-9997 for assistance.  Rapidan Dam Park does not accept reservations.
  • Night fishing is allowed. Registration is required and is free of charge. Please stay on the main hiking trail to your fishing destination and respect the quiet environment and privacy of tent campers. The front gate is locked after 10:00 pm. 
  • Firewood, ice, bait and food are available at the Rapidan Dam Cafe, which also serves as the caretaker office for the park. 
  • Red Jacket Trail users can easily travel to the Rapidan Dam Park by following the paved shoulders of County Road 9 and cross over the Rapidan Dam bridge deck to reach the park and store.

Park Rules 

  • Glass beverage containers and beer in containers larger than one quart are not allowed. It is against the law to be under the influence of intoxicating liquors.
  • It is against the law to possess drugs or to be under the influence of drugs.
  • No firearms or hunting is permitted within the park.
  • Pets are allowed, provided they are on a leash no longer than six feet.
  • Motorized vehicles are only allowed on the service road to the parking lots.
  • Bicycles are allowed within the park, provided they stay on the service road.

Park Size
38.69 acres

Acquisition Date
February 2004

*Water to the camp sites may be turned off prior to October 31st.  The decision is based on weather and temperatures to prevent damage.  We are sorry for any inconvenience.