How I’ve never visited the famous Minnehaha Falls before this year is beyond me, but when we switched our Omaha trip to a Twin Cities trip, I knew it had to be a stop we finally made. After doing some research online, I’d heard that the park quickly gets busy most days, so we opted to make it our first stop in order to ensure that we could find parking. Turns out we didn’t need to worry!
The park has ample parking, we weren’t exactly sure where the falls were located in the park as we drove in, so we just kept driving until we got a close street parking spot nearby the restaurant located in the park. We fed the meter quite a bit since we didn’t know how far we’d have to walk…..turns out we didn’t need to feed it quite as much as we did!
When we began walking we noticed we’d have to cross a stone bridge to get over to where the restaurant was and figured that’s where we would find a map or some other signage telling us where to find the falls. We could already hear rushing water at that point, but figured it made sense since snow melt had been significant the past week.
As we crossed the bridge we came to the realization that finding a map or sign was not necessary as we were standing right on top of Minnehaha Falls.
We crossed the bridge and came to an overlook from the side.
As we walked a little further along, we came to another overlook which gave us a better full view.
Despite the recent snow melt, you can see the falls themselves were still quite frozen. I thought this made for a neat experience as it was a unique way to experience the falls two seasons at once!
There was a steep set of stairs (that were also still a bit icy) open on that side that we thought we’d slowly make our way down to see the falls up close.
There also was a set of stairs coming down from the side where we parked our car, but they were still blocked off for obvious safety reasons.
Here’s a photo of the side we trekked down. As you can see, snow and ice was still an issue on that side as well, but not nearly as bad as the photo above.
The area beneath the falls also had a little bridge that allowed you to cross the creek to access either set of stairs. It appears a trail would also normally extend out below the falls when there isn’t as much snow. They had lots of neat rock formations situated in that area.
Of course, Minnehaha Regional Park also offers far more than the falls. We walked around for a bit noticing their disc golf course and dog park. They also have a restaurant that I mentioned earlier. It did not appear open the day we visited, which could be because we were there so early, or could be that they have different hours in the winter/spring. There also are a ton of other trails to walk and hike along.
I’m sure Minnehaha Falls is “more” beautiful when the grass and plants are green, but I’m truly glad we got to experience it when we did as the water flow was much stronger and we still got to check out the frozen falls. If any of you have ever visited the falls, drop a comment for your favorite time to visit!
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