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About Lake Carlos State Park
Operator
State
Access
Drive In
Walk In
Boat In
Features
ADA Accessible
Drinking Water
Electric Hookups
Fires Allowed
Firewood Available
Market
Pets Allowed
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Reservable
Sanitary Dump
Sewer Hookups
Showers
Toilets
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Location
Lake Carlos State Park is located in Minnesota
Latitude
46 N
Longitude
-95.336 W
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11 Reviews of Lake Carlos State Park
Beautiful camper cabin

Leap Day 2/29/20-3/1/20 Frog Pond

We headed to Lake Carlos for their candlelight ski, this was our first visit to this state park. Tent camping wasn’t available and we were able to reserve a camper cabin - Frog Pond. It was a nice change and a warmer option, the cabin is gorgeous! Frog Pond sleeps 6 with heat and electricity. There are 4 cabins that share 2 vault toilets.

It was a beautiful 38 degree Leap Day and we took advantage of it. They offer a large number of ski trails so we xcountry skied before dark. The trails were icy, but still enjoyable. At dark we headed to the candlelight event. It was very busy and a huge turnout. We hiked 1.2 miles and then snowshoed 2.4 miles. There are ponds and bogs that they create snowshoe trails on, so there are even more trails to explore in the winter. It was a beautiful night and we enjoyed the wooded trails and starry skies. We had a fire and enjoyed a normal outdoor cookout before bed.

We did more skiing on Sunday and checked out the 2 campgrounds as they were on the ski route. One campground is on Lake Carlos and very open. Sites have beautiful lake views. You can apparently drive your boat right into a sandy shore and dock it. They also have a swimming beach. The other campground is a bit more wooded and more suited for tents. This campground is near the camper cabins. The trails are very wooded and pretty. We enjoyed skiing the hiking club trail and ended up hitting almost every trail in our stay. I assume this park would be equally beautiful in the summer. What a beautiful state park!

Right on the lake

This is a beautiful campground right on the lake. We stayed in the lower campground and had great views of the lake and was able to beach the boat. The lower campground is less private and is busy.

Nice weekend spot

Most spots were shaded by mature shade trees. A nice beach, especially for kids. Technically, no booze it there but if you keep it in concealed and don’t cause a problem, you’re golden.

Beautiful but a bit crowded

I am from a suburb of Twin Cities metro area in Minnesota and we wanted to go camping with my in-laws who have horses. We needed a park that was close and had equestrian camping so we decided to go to Lake Carlos State Park.

Lake Carlos State Park is roughly 2.5hours from the Twin Cities and is a beautiful getaway for a weekend trip. You can leave after work on a Friday and still have time to make it to the park, set up and still be able to cook dinner and enjoy a s’more or two.

We booked site H3 in the equestrian campground which was a VERY open site right off the main loop in the equestrian campground. It was very sunny and barely any shade for the horses. The site were in was electric and there were only three non-electric sites in the equestrian campground. The other sites were awesome for shade but were still super open to everyone.

There were great trails for hiking and horseback riding. They also allowed mountain biking on the trails.

The staff at the office were super friendly and they talked to us for about 15 minutes. Their store in the office was pretty great and they had everything from toys for the kids to s’mores stuff and stickers specific to the park. The firewood was pretty fast burning and cost 6$ a bundle so it was pretty spendy since we cook only over the fire.

The main campground was VERY busy and jammed packed. The sites were too close together and open for my comfort.

The beach was very dirty and there were army worms everywhere crawling on everything.

We took a little bike ride to the group camp which was an amazing area with a very nice shelter with electric.

All in all, this is a good park to go to if you are looking for a park close to the twin cities metro area.

Beautiful but a bit crowded

I am from a suburb of Twin Cities metro area in Minnesota and we wanted to go camping with my in-laws who have horses. We needed a park that was close and had equestrian camping so we decided to go to Lake Carlos State Park.

Lake Carlos State Park is roughly 2.5hours from the Twin Cities and is a beautiful getaway for a weekend trip. You can leave after work on a Friday and still have time to make it to the park, set up and still be able to cook dinner and enjoy a s’more or two.

We booked site H3 in the equestrian campground which was a VERY open site right off the main loop in the equestrian campground. It was very sunny and barely any shade for the horses. The site were in was electric and there were only three non-electric sites in the equestrian campground. The other sites were awesome for shade but were still super open to everyone.

There were great trails for hiking and horseback riding. They also allowed mountain biking on the trails.

The staff at the office were super friendly and they talked to us for about 15 minutes. Their store in the office was pretty great and they had everything from toys for the kids to s’mores stuff and stickers specific to the park. The firewood was pretty fast burning and cost 6$ a bundle so it was pretty spendy since we cook only over the fire.

The main campground was VERY busy and jammed packed. The sites were too close together and open for my comfort.

The beach was very dirty and there were army worms everywhere crawling on everything.

We took a little bike ride to the group camp which was an amazing area with a very nice shelter with electric.

All in all, this is a good park to go to if you are looking for a park close to the twin cities metro area.

the best - but ya gotta follow the rules

One of our families favorite spots! make sure to get the lower campground my the water, it’s magical.. the only downfall is that the rangers take all rules very very very seriously. no hammocks on trees (hurts them), no picking up stray firewood, no clothes lines, on and on. with that said - we still come back year after year, just read all the fine print so you don’t expect one thing and the bust you for that tree killing hammock.

Family fun!

This is a great camp ground with upper and lower sites ! Great bathrooms and nice size camp sites. Enough electric and primitive sites :). Nice trails for hiking :)

Good location

Stopped here one night. It was quiet and amenities were clean.

Good lake

Good lake, had a great swimming beach. Our campsite wasn't private but there are some that are surrounded by trees and private. Would love to come back to this state park

Wonderful place for families.

Lots of sites with and without electricity. Sites are spacious with close access to the lake from any of the lower campground sites. Large beach area for swimming and pylons to tie up boats. Good trail system and a great swimming area. Nature center is really good and all of the staff are great and friendly. Definitely worth checking out.