Carver Park Reserve
Situated on the western edge of the Twin Cities, Carver Park Reserve is home to Lowry Nature Center, Grimm Farm Historic Site and King Waterbird Sanctuary. Here, you may spot trumpeter swans, osprey, mink, white-tailed deer, barred owls and a variety of waterfowl and songbirds. Explore year-round activities that take advantage of winding trails, rolling wooded terrain and interconnected lakes and marshes.
Horse Trail Conditions
Check horse trail conditions before you head out.
things to do
Range & Walking Course
Keep those skills sharp at the Carver Park archery range. Targets at multiple distances and an elevated platform provide plenty of opportunities to work on your shot, and the walk-through course will have you primed for the season. An annual or daily pass is required for individuals 16 and older.
9.1 miles of trails
A well-maintained, paved trail creates a loop on both the eastern and western sections of the park, with a connecting link in the central part of the park. The trail travels through the park's big woods and along the many marshes. The trail connects to Lowry Nature Center, Lake Auburn Campground and the Lake Minnetonka LRT Regional Trail.
For an authentic camping experience, try the Lake Auburn campground. This 57-site rustic public campground is located near an unguarded beach, play equipment, miles of trails and other park amenities for true outdoor fun.
Carver Park Reserve also has five rustic group campsites. Some group sites are now open!
11.3 miles of trails
An extensive network of trails groomed for skate and classic skiing winds through the western portion of the park, passing scenic overlooks along the way. One trail leads to Lowry Nature Center. Skiers ages 12 and older must have a Three Rivers Park District daily or annual cross-country ski pass. Classic and skate ski equipment rentals are available on Tuesday and Thursday through Sunday, when conditions permit. Don't forget to check the trail conditions before you head out.
Geocaching is a family-friendly, high-tech treasure hunt that combines respect for the environment with a sense of adventure. This activity involves placing or looking for a cache using global positioning system (GPS) equipment.
25.7 miles of trails
A well-maintained paved trail runs along both the eastern and western sections of the park. A centrally located link takes you to a variety of scenic overlooks. Wildlife in Carver Park Reserve may be spotted along the turf trails, as well as over 1,700 feet of floating boardwalk that take you through marsh and tamarack swamps.
Within Carver Park Reserve, you’ll find the Grimm Farm Historic Site, often called the birthplace of the Dairy Belt. The farmhouse area serves as an educational facility where guests have the opportunity to experience Minnesota’s agricultural heritage and explore the relationship between food, land and people. Open seasonally.
9.2 miles of trails, closed
Extensive horse trails take riders past many of the lakes and marshes in the western portion of the park. Limited trailer parking is available off of Grimm Road. Horse trails are not open during the winter. An annual or daily pass is required for each rider age 16 or older. Three Rivers Park District does not rent horses.
The first public nature center built in the Twin Cities, Lowry Nature Center is a beautiful, prairie-style building nestled in the middle of Carver Park Reserve. Inside, view seasonal interpretive displays, visit our live animals, observe birds in our wildlife viewing area, or just relax near the fireplace or on the deck.
704 acres of water
Carver Park Reserve has access to three lakes: Zumbra, Steiger and Auburn. Launch your own boat on all three, or rent a canoe, kayak or rowboat at Lake Auburn Campground. Steiger Lake has a no-wake restriction.
Rental Hours & Process
Hours: Noon-7 PM, Thursday-Sunday
Grab a bite and some rays at one of the first-come, first-served picnic areas found is the north-western portion of the park reserve. The Springview Picnic Area is also available for group reservations.
Explore Carver with KARE 11
Learn all about Carver Park Reserve and other Three Rivers parks in KARE 11's Hitting the Trails series.
Aug. 4 & 14 | Bryant & Carver
Test your aim with an archery lesson or learn how to kayak! Open to ages 50+.
Ongoing | Multiple Locations
Go for a guided morning canoe on a serene lake, learn the essentials of kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding, and more!
All Programs and Events
View upcoming programs and events at Carver!
Carver Singletrack Trail
Construction is underway on the new Carver Singletrack Trail! The trail is anticipated to open in late spring or early summer of 2020. Learn more about the project.
Volunteers are an important part of the operations at Carver Park Reserve. Put your talent, passion, and energy to use in the parks by volunteering.
Funding to purchase a portion of the land for this park was provided by the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund.
The Three Rivers Blog
By: Paul Kortebein
Cottonwood trees may be best known for making it look like it's snowing in June, but there's more to these giants than their annual seed dispersal. Read on to learn all about these native trees and how they fit into Minnesota's environment.
By: John Moriarty
Trumpeter swans once nested throughout Minnesota, but were eliminated by early settlers who hunted them for feathers and food. Learn what it took to restore their populations and explore current efforts in managing trumpeters today.