Happy paddlers glide along a quiet stretch of the St. Croix River south of Taylors Falls.

David Denney, Star Tribune

Metro area canoeing: St. Croix River

  • May 11, 2012 - 2:17 PM

Paddle stretches of the St. Croix and you'll swear you're on a far-north wilderness river, yet this national treasure is practically in the backyard of the Twin Cities. With its wooded banks, pine-studded islands and sandstone and limestone bluffs, the St. Croix offers spectacular day paddles. Or bring your camping gear and make it a weekend. Many outfitters rent canoes, gear and shuttle service. Try St. Croix Falls, Wis., to Osceola, Wis., or Sunrise Landing to Wild River State Park. Stop at a sandbar for lunch and a swim.

Runner-up: Mississippi River

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