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McCarthy Beach State Park, Side Lake

4.4
#73 of 84 in Nature in Minnesota
State Park Nature / Park
McCarthy Beach State Park is a state park of Minnesota, USA, on the Sturgeon Lake chain near Hibbing. It is located in French Township, Saint Louis County.EcosystemThirty-three species of wildlife inhabit the park including white-tailed deer, black bear, timber wolves, chipmunks, red squirrels, raccoons, and several species of reptiles and amphibians. More than 175 species of birds also visit the area.The park protects a northern boreal forest with stands of red and white pine and leatherleaf-black spruce lowlands.GeologyThe glaciers that moved through the area gouged and tore at the bedrock, the cooled lava of ancient volcanoes. During that period, glaciers flowed south, retreated north, and flowed south again. The first glacier stopped where McCarthy Beach is now located. It left low rolling hills with steep sides called moraines. Between the hills, the glaciers gouged valleys and in the larger valleys, lakes were formed.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
21 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • We spend a lot of time at McCarthy Beach State Park. I grew up camping there every summer. The state park has an amazing beach! It's shallow for a long time going out into the lake. People from all ar...  more »
  • Loved this campground, so clean and well kept. Nice new and very clean bath house. A lovely beach on a very beautiful lake. Dog friendly. Could only stay for 2 days, didn't want to leave, so peaceful....  more »
  • Beach is gorgeous! Water is pretty shallow and is very clear. Has nice facilities. Also has picnic tables, fire pits, bathrooms and camping.  more »
Google
  • This is one of the best parks in Minnesota. It's located between two lakes. The campground is on Side Lake, and has great fishing and boating space. Also space to keep your boat in the water. Bathrooms and showers are brand new, and are very nice. Cross the street, and your're at the DNR's best swimming beach in the state. Staff are great, sites are perfect. Great little town as well. Fantastic ice cream a block or so down the road. Hiking is great, with wooded trails that wrap around the bay. Grab a map and go exploring, great biking too. Only down side, good luck getting a site. This place is very popular. Probably time to expand.
  • Great camping spot. Beach is great for wading. There are docks near the campground to tie a boat up. Chain of lakes provides many options for fishing and exploring.
  • Nice beach and trails. No running water currently available due to contamination. Campground is well maintained, but sites and roads are tight and feel a bit cramped for large rvs and trailers.
  • Been here twice and had a blast both times. Nice relaxing sites with a bit of privacy. Kayaking around the lake is a must
  • Beach is clean with lots of space to picnic. The restrooms and showers just got remodeled and it's v nice.

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