Just to the east of town is the Hinckley Fire Monument which memorializes the 418 people that died. It was rather sobering to still be able to see the outlines of the four trenches where 248 of the victims were buried. You can click here to read the inscription.
Hinckley — Smoldering Memories
It is impossible to visit Hinckley and not learn about the Great Hinckley Fire of 1894. This firestorm was so horrific that within 4 hours more than 400 square miles were black and smoldering, 418 people lost their lives and six communities were consumed including Hinckley. It is impossible to imagine the horrendous drama of people fleeing a 5 mile high fire wall with winds of 75-100 mph and air temperatures reaching 1500 degrees.
Hinckley is the home of renowned chainsaw sculpturer Dennis Roghair. Danny especially loved the extraordinary detail that was captured in this wood sculpture.
Portions of the Mille Lacs Indian Reservation are located within and adjacent to Hinckley. We stayed at the Ojibwe managed Grand Casino RV resort … and give it a 5-star rating.
From Hinckley we drove 20 miles to St. Croix State Park … located at the confluence of the Kettle and St. Croix Rivers. The park’s critical role in the development of the National Park Service has earned it the distinction as a National Historic Landmark. In the 1930's, St. Croix was the location of a National Recreational Demonstration Area, where Civilian Conservation Corps personnel developed park facilities later modeled in recreational sites nationwide.
This vintage-style Smoky Bear sign made us feel nostalgic for the 50's again.
Many of the structures built by the Civilian Conservation Corps remain authentic to their original design … an intentionally rustic style so popular for park design at the time.
The River Bluff Trail is one of the easier trails in the park. The trail meanders above the Kettle River on a sand and mud bank lined with red pine.
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