Hiking in Lake Rebecca Park Reserve

woman hiking on a paved trail in lake rebecca park reserve in early spring
An early spring hike in Lake Rebecca Park Reserve

Rockford/Hennepin County • No vehicle fee

Lake Rebecca Park Reserve, on the western edge of Hennepin County, has a huge trail system for hikers, both paved and natural surface.

This lovely 2,577-acre park is located between Rockford and Delano, and is worth the drive! Even on this spring day before the trees were budding and things were greening up, I was struck by the beauty of the landscape.

What Hikers Will Love about Lake Rebecca

Lake Rebecca is right up there as having the most trails for hikers of any park in the metro area. The summer map shows 26 miles—8 miles on paved trails and another 18 unpaved. The vast majority of the unpaved are horse trails. You’re welcome to hike them, too, but give horses the right-of-way, please, and watch where you step 🙂

paved trail lake at rebecca park reserve in early spring
Walking in the spring or late fall gives an open feeling to the trails, when there are no leaves to block the view

Then there are an additional 13+ miles of dirt trails in the single-track bike park on the west side of Lake Rebecca that are also open to hikers. You can see that map here.

If there’s a disadvantage, it’s that much of the trail system involves long loops. So if you’re just there for a short distance, plan on an out-and-back hike. The trail around the lake is 6ish miles, the horse loop, about 10.

Last week, we hiked the route shown below in blue—it was beautiful!

part of the trail map at lake rebecca
This section we hiked (in blue) was lovely! About 4 miles out-and-back from the parking lot.

If you’re a photographer or birder, this park reserve is known for its wildlife. It’s part of Three Rivers’ Trumpeter Swan Restoration Program. Several hundred of these striking birds congregate in the fall, and there’s a large nesting population.

A Great Park for Trail Runners

With so many miles in one place, Lake Rebecca is a super location for trail runners, especially for long runs. I wish I would’ve known about this park back in my days of half-marathon training!

Winter at Lake Rebecca

During the snowy months, 10.5 miles of the trail system is open for multi-use: hikers, cross country skiers and snowshoers. Nothing is groomed. Here’s the winter map.

What Else is at Lake Rebecca

There are a ton of outdoor rec activities available here. Besides hiking there’s:

  • Biking—both on the paved trails and the mountain bike/single-track park
  • Horseback riding (bring your own horse!)
  • An amazing playground (shown below)
  • Swimming beach
  • Boat launch for your canoe or kayak. But, this is a motorized lake, so watch out for boat traffic on the weekends and holiday.
  • Group camping for tent campers. Both Group Sites have direct access to the trail system.
playground at lake rebecca park reserve
Part of the playground area at Lake Rebecca (temporarily closed at the time of this post, due to COVID-19 cautions)

How to Get There

The address for the park is 9831 Rebecca Park Trail in Rockford. It’s on the western edge of Hennepin County, not far off Highway 55. The recreation entrance is on the west side. There’s lots of parking available.

Even though it’s a haul for most Twin Cities’ residents, it’s worth it! Very beautiful and a ton of stuff to do.

hiking trail at Lake Rebecca in early spring
Mature trees mean lots of shade in the summer and lots of beauty in the fall
Hiking Guide cover

Twin Cities Hiking & Trail Running Guide

Published in 2020 and updated in 2023, our 48-page digital Hiking & Trail Running Guide is the easiest way to find hiking and running trails in all seven counties of the Twin Cities metro area.

Click here for the details…

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Sharon Brodin
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