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Camping at Hennepin Canal State Trail


The Hennepin Canal State Park is not enrolled in the ReserveAmerica camping reservation system and DOES NOT take camping reservations.  Camping at the Canal is on a first-come, first-serve basis.  The Canal’s site security officer makes rounds to each campsite to collect camping fees, in-person.  Campers can pay by cash or check.  Camping along the Hennepin Canal towpath is PROHIBITED – camping is only allowed in the designated campsites.


Campsites are located at a number of locations along the Hennepin Canal.  The Canal offers class "C" (primitive camping without showers or electricity) for $8.00 per family unit/night.  Fires are only allowed in the state designated fire pits at the campsites. Motorized campers and equestrians are also welcome.

Campsites along the canal can be found at:

Lock 6, on the north bank of the canal east of the lock

  • Lock 11, west of the Canal Prism
  • Lock 17, northwest of the lock (toilets currently closed)
  • Lock 21, North Day Use Area (drinking water available)
  • Bridge 14, north bank
  • Lock 22, southwest of the lift bridge (drinking water available)
  • Bridge 23, south bank
  • Lock 23, just west of the parking lot
  • Lock 26, south bank

Equestrian camping is restricted to the south side of the Lock 21 area.  Equestrian campers are asked to bring a shovel to clear their own horse droppings, which may pushed off to the side of the trail.  There is no tethering to trees.

If you are not familiar with the canal it may be confusing trying to find the campsites.  Stop by the Hennepin Canal Visitor Center to pick up a detailed map of the canal, which shows all of the country crossroads.  It is in a large print format and not available online.  You can also call the visitor center and ask to be mailed a copy: 815-454-2328