Mississippi Gateway Regional Park

Mississippi Gateway Regional Park is one of the most unique parks in Three Rivers. The Mississippi River defines the boundary of this 160-acre park and there are many opportunities to see our nation’s greatest river up close. From the 12-foot-wide observation walkway on top of the dam, enjoy spectacular scenery, the roar of the water and rainbows in the mist.

Follow the more than two miles of trails along the bank of the river and disappear into the beauty and quiet of nature. Look for signs of the abundant wildlife that live in or visit the park—mink, beaver, hawks, osprey, deer, turtles and river otters. In winter, snowshoeing is popular here.


For more information about the Phase 2 road and trail construction project at the park, click here.

Interactive Map of Mississippi Gateway

Mississippi Gateway PDF Map

Year-round Map

Find yourself in the parks with the Avenza app! Learn more.

Things To Do

Bike Trail


Bikers crossing the dam

One mile of trail

There is one mile of paved trail in the park with an additional two miles of trails on the Anoka County side of the dam. Rush Creek Regional Trail connects the park to Elm Creek Park Reserve

The 12-ft wide walkway is a unique and popular bike path over the river.

Dog Trails - On Leash

Dog Trails

Man walking a dog on a paved trail

4.6 miles of trails

Walk your dog on the one mile paved trail, some turf trails, and on the adjoining Rush Creek Regional Trail. Dogs are allowed with a six-foot, non-retractable leash. Owners must pick-up after their dog.

Fishing / Fishing Pier


Man and child fishing in the river

Mississippi River

A fishing deck is located on the west side of the dam. It is low enough to give anglers a good opportunity to ply the waters of the Mississippi River just below the gates of the dam. Spring flooding makes fishing unsafe along the shoreline and is discouraged. Water levels and current speed are variable at other times of the year. Fishing is not allowed from the Coon Rapids Dam walkway. Anglers must have a valid Minnesota fishing license.



GPS units on table

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.



Paved trail in the woods

5.9 miles of trails

Two turf trails follow the river downstream from the dam and offer vistas of the islands and back channels. There is one mile of paved trail in the park including a walkway across the dam. Rush Creek Regional Trail connects the park to Elm Creek Park Reserve. 

Nature Education

Nature Education

Children looking at minnows in a jar

The Visitor Center, located on west side of the river, is nestled in the woods above the river floodplain. The activities and exhibits focus on the natural history of the Mississippi River. Inside the visitor center, guests can find hands-on exhibits, live animals and year-round nature programming. Exploration backpacks are also available for checkout! 



A man in a red hat paddles a red kayak on the water.

A carry-in boat access is located below the visitor center. Paddlers are advised to check Mississippi River conditions before launching.

Paddle Share Program

The Mississippi River Paddle Share Program has partnered with Three Rivers to offer kayak rentals to experienced paddlers! Put-in stations are located in the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area at Mississippi Gateway Regional Park and River Park (in partnership with Brooklyn Park). Plan your trip, make online reservations and see who else has partnered with this program. Learn more.

Picnic Area

Picnic Areas

Picnic table in shaded area

First-come, first-served picnic tables and grills are available for use throughout the park, with plenty of room for lawn games.



Group snowshoeing across field

1.5 miles of trails

Explore the nature trails along the Mississippi River with snowshoes available to rent online

Upcoming Events

October 17-31 | Multiple Locations
Dress up in costume, walk on an enchanted trail, try geocaching and more at one of Three Rivers' Halloween programs!

Ongoing | Richardson & Mississippi Gateway
Explore nature through hands-on activities! 

All Programs & Events

See all upcoming programs and events at Mississippi Gateway.

Nearly all of our program offerings can be adapted or modified. Please call 763-559-9000 (for relay services dial 711) or email access@ThreeRiversParks.org to request specific services or to discuss options.

The Future of Mississippi Gateway

Changes are coming to Mississippi Gateway Regional Park!

Starting in 2017, community members in Brooklyn Park helped Three Rivers Park District and the City of Brooklyn Park develop a new master plan for Mississippi Gateway Regional Park, formerly Coon Rapids Dam Regional Park. We are excited to announce that the project is moving forward.

The plans will combine Mississippi Gateway Regional Park and the Environmental Nature Area in Brooklyn Park into a new park that will be a year-round connection for all people to celebrate the Mississippi River and the outdoors.

The master plan process identified new park features that will make the park a more inviting, welcoming and vibrant place for everyone to discover nature and the river. New paved trails and parking lots have already been completed and additional park features will be added over the next few years. These features include a new Mississippi Gateway Center, an elevated walkway, nature play areas, learning labs, improvements to trails, fishing, picnicking, archery and more.

Construction may begin as early as 2022. Want to know more? Visit this link to sign up for Mississippi Gateway Project Updates and Alerts.

Learn more about the master plan.

Nature School is an outdoor-based preschool program for children ages 4-6. Led by Three Rivers at Mississippi Gateway Regional Park, it provides the freedom to explore and play in nature, fostering a lifelong connection to the natural world! 

Watch a Video about Mississippi Gateway

Park Operations

Three Rivers Park District owns all of the land within Mississippi Gateway Regional Park plus the entire Coon Rapids Dam. Learn more about the operations of this area.

Give to Mississippi Gateway

Do you love Mississippi Gateway Regional Park? Support the park with a donation!

The Wandering Naturalist

Episodes 102-104: Fear of Nature

Get a European historical perspective on the fear of wilderness; listen to a discussion about what animals, if any, you might fear in parks (and how to stay safe); and learn how you can address fears that show up when trying new recreational activities.

The Three Rivers Blog

5 Places To Fish From Shore

By: Erin Korsmo

May 31, 2021

Fishing is a great way to connect with nature, the outdoors, family and friends. If you are new to the sport, we have several locations in Three Rivers where you can test the waters — no boat required! Read on for a list of our favorite spots on land and what kind of fish you might catch while you’re there.

Phenology: Nature's Calendar

By: Ashley Smith

March 22, 2021

American robins, red-winged blackbirds, the call of wood frogs — signs of spring are upon us and we are taking note! Learn what it means to notice these changes of the season and how phenology helps local and global communities.

September 02, 2020

This year has presented unique challenges for educators around the world. Learn how one of our environmental educators adapted to teaching in the pandemic and what new strategies she used to benefit her students.

Trails That Connect


Similar Areas

Silverwood Park

2500 County Road E
St. Anthony, MN 55421

French Regional Park

12605 Rockford Road
Plymouth, MN 55441

North Mississippi Regional Park

5700 Lyndale Avenue N
Brooklyn Center, MN 55430