Interactive Park Map
aerial seven mile creek park

Water flows from the upland agricultural area into Seven Mile Creek Park. The park is located four miles south of St. Peter and seven miles north of Mankato along US 169. It is one the area's finest parks and is managed by Nicollet County. Over eight miles of multi-use trails wind through a beautiful, deep forested valley with a spring-fed trout stream flowing down the middle. You can hike, bike, and ride horses on the trails (Park trail map). Explore the park with an interactive map.

The lower reaches of Seven Mile Creek flow all year long due to groundwater upwellings, or springs. The springs are located near the upper parking area within the park. The groundwater flows maintain cool temperatures during the summer and provide ice free conditions in the winter.

Seven Mile Creek is a designated trout stream. This type of fishery is very rare for South Central Minnesota. These springs are key for trout survival. A trout stream requires a certain mix of streambed geology, adequate groundwater, and compatible land use within the watershed in order for sensitive fish like trout to survive. One of the most important factors is temperature. Trout need cold water and cannot tolerate temperatures above 75 degrees. In an area where prairie and now cropland dominate, cool temperatures are not typical. Seven Mile Creek is an exception. Because this area contains steep gradients, heavily forested vegetation, and a gravelly substrate, a very unique habitat and fishery can exist. A streambank protection project was completed to protect the streambank from erosion as well as to increase trout habitat.

Each spring, the Department of Natural Resources stocks Seven Mile Creek with fingerling brown trout (less than a year old, about 4 inches long). The stocked trout have grown up to 18 inches long, although most are around 6 to 12 inches. The trout can usually be seen in the deep pools when the water is clear. Quietly approach the stream and hide behind vegetation to observe and maybe catch these wary fish. (More trout information) Next

Native wildflowers with monarch butterflies
One of the many trails through the Park
fish survey
DNR Fish survey
brown trout
Brown Trout
habitat project
Streambank stabilization and fish
habitat project
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