Rydell National Wildlife Refuge








U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service






















Printable Map(s) with GPS coordinates




2,120 acres




17788 349th Street SE
Erskine, MN

N47 39.487, W96 5.600




Refuge: Dawn - dusk for all approved outdoor activities

Trails: 1/2 hour before sunrise to sunset, except during scheduled deer hunts




No fee

No National Wildlife Refuge in Minnesota charges a fee


Driving Directions

  Area and County  

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          Polk County  
          Northwest Minnesota  

Hiking Trails


7 miles
5 miles handicapped accessible




Deer by archery and numerous upland game species.

See Hunting - Rydell National Wildlife Refuge for details.


Ecological Classification

  Ecological Classification  
  Ecological Province    

Eastern Broadleaf Forest Province
Tallgrass Aspen Parklands

  Ecological Section    

Minnesota and NE Iowa Morainal
Lake Agassiz, Aspen Parklands

  Ecological Subsection    

Aspen Parklands
Hardwood Hills

  Land Type Association    

Beach Ridges

Brooks Lake Plain

Erskine Till Plain

Goodridge Lake Plain


Native Plant Communities*


Bur Oak - Aspen Forest

Meadow - Marsh - Fen -Swamp Complex

Northern Shrub Shore Fen

Sugar Maple - Basswood - (Aspen) Forest

  * Source: The Minnesota Biological Survey, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Ecological Resources      

Natural Features








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Glacial Ridge & Rydell National Wildlife Refuges
USFWS Midwest Region
  Glacial Ridge & Rydell National Wildlife Refuges  
Rydell National Wildlife Refuge
Elizabeth Almlie
  Rydell National Wildlife Refuge  



Visitor Videos

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Other Videos
  Prairie Life: Rydell NWR Visitor Center
Carl Barrentine

Aug 1, 2015

This short film provides a brief visual introduction to the Visitor Center at the Rydell National Wildlife Refuge, Erskine Minnesota. The Visitor Center is a wonderful Interpretive, Environmental, and Educational Resource located at the Rydell Refuge. Many volunteers are 'Friends of the FRGRRA (Rydell and Glacial Ridge Refuges Association, Inc.). Filmed at Erskine, Minnesota (29 July 2015).

  FREE HIDDEN TREASURE: Rydell National Wildlife Refuge
iNewZ TV

Jul 2, 2017

POLK COUNTY, MN (iNewZ.TV) If you're looking for a quick trip this Fourth of July weekend, the Rydell National Wildlife Refuge is just an hours drive east of Grand Forks.

  Rydell National Wildlife Refuge
Outdoor Nomad

Jul 13, 2020

The Rydell National Wildlife Refuge is an 2,120-acre (9 km2) National Wildlife Refuge in northwestern Minnesota, located in Woodside Township, Polk County, just west of Erskine in northwestern Minnesota. It was established in 1992. The refuge is a combination of maple/basswood/oak forest, wetlands, tallgrass prairie and bogs.

Wildlife comes first on national wildlife refuges; all human activities must be compatible with the needs of wildlife. Six activities are encouraged when appropriate: hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, photography, environmental education and interpretation. Rydell Refuge offers all of these, and more!

  Disabled Hunters Hunt at Rydell Wildlife Refuge.m4v
Lakeland PBS

Jun 24, 2011

For the last sixteen years Options has managed a deer hunt for people with disabilities in collaboration with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Rydell National Wildlife Refuge in coordination with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. This story which aired on Lakeland News on October 21, 2003 presents a closer look at hunting opportunities for anyone with a disability.

  Rydell National Wildlife Refuge - Bike Adventure
Doug Skramstad

Jun 27, 2021




Visitor Sightings

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Lisa Boschee Wiersma



  red-bellied snake (Storeria occipitomaculata)   red-bellied snake  
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings





Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas Amphibians and Reptiles List




Ten bird species with conservation status in Minnesota have been seen here:


Chestnut-collared Longspur (Calcarius ornatus)

Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

Special Concern

American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

Forster’s Tern (Sterna forsteri)

Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)

Greater Prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus cupido)

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)

Marbled Godwit (Limosa fedoa)

Purple Martin (Progne subis)

Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator)


eBird Field Checklist




One plant species with conservation status in Minnesota are found here:

Special Concern

pale moonwort (Botrychium pallidum)


Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas and Minnesota Biological Survey Vegetation Releves Plant List


Plants frequently found in:

Bur Oak - Aspen Forest FDs36a

Northern Shrub Shore Fen OPn81

Sugar Maple - Basswood - (Aspen) Forest MHc37b




Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas Amphibians and Reptiles List





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