Ranger on Call | Fort Snelling

Explore Minnesota’s proud and sometimes painful history on this tour of south Minneapolis. Some of the sites it will lead you past are: Historic Fort Snelling, Coldwater Spring, and the lovely Minnehaha Falls.

Where to ride


TIME: 1 hr 30 min

DISTANCE: 5.5 miles

Historical audio/visual content about this route is available through the National Park Service's Ranger on Call Program. Learn More

Check out the Nice Ride station map for additional locations and remember that the Single Ride and Day Pass are good for 30 minute rides at a time (one 30 minute ride, if you have a Single Ride pass; unlimited 30 minute rides in 24 hours for the Day Pass). Purchase a 30 Day Membership or annual membership to extend ride lengths to 60 minutes before accruing additional costs.

A. Historic Fort Snelling

Begin the tour at the Fort Snelling Visitors Center. A National Historic Landmark, Fort Snelling resides on Dakota homeland, known as Bdote, with history spanning 10,000 years. Learn about of the military fort and its surrounding area, home to a wide history that includes Native peoples, trade, soldiers and veterans, enslaved people, immigrants, and the landscape.

B. Fort Snelling State Park

Situated at the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers, Fort Snelling State Park offers miles of bike trails and excellent opportunities to see local wildlife and escape the city.

C. Coldwater Spring

A natural spring that is over 10,000 years old, Cold Water Spring has served as a crossroads for Native Americans and traders throughout history. Today the site is part of the National River Recreation area.

D. Minnehaha Falls

This park takes its name after the beautiful stream and its spectacular falls that plunges 53 feet into a gorge before running out to the Mississippi River. Snap a few selfies on the bridge just above the falls and then grab yourself a treat at the local Dairy Queen on Minnehaha Ave

See the interactive map below for more information.