Jeffers Petroglyphs
Loop Trail


Jeffers Petroglyphs is a place of power. The first time I walked here was in the early morning, a cold wind blowing across the prairie on a leaden sky day. The rustle of the grass seemed distance as I first set foot on the stone, staring long at each carving, slowly becoming one with the prairie and the stone.

This is a place worth visiting many times. Light makes all the difference - morning and afternoon light show the carvings best, but other light shows other things.
The walk through the prairie after viewing the petroglyphs is quiet and contemplative, a good place for newfound feelings to find their place.

From the junction of MN-19 and Interstate Hwy 71 in Redwood Falls, Minnesota, head south along I71 for 30.2 miles to Cty. Hwy 10.
At Cty Hwy 10, turn left and head east 3.0 miles to 510th Ave/Cty Rd 2.
Turn right onto Cty Rd. 2 and head south 1.2 miles to the entrance to Jeffers Petroglyphs.
Coordinates for the hike: 44.0909020,-95.0586670
Parking / Trailhead amenities
Park in the gravel parking lot - there is plenty of room. You will need to enter the visitors center to pay an entrance fee - rates are posted along the short path that leads to the visitor center. The visitor center has clean restrooms and some interesting exhibits, along with gifts and merchandise for sale.
Trail observations
The trailhead starts at the exit from the visitors center - the gravel trail to the petroglyphs is wide and smooth. There are benches and signs along the trail. When you get to the petroglyphs, be sure to walk along all the boardwalks - when you are walking on rock, be sure to stay inside the rope walkway!
Beyond the petroglyphs, a mowed trail leaves from the end of a turnaround on the gravel pathway. Take this trail to return to the visitors center.
Trail statistics
The trail is 1.47 miles long. The sum of all the uphill climbs is 30 feet.
Trail waypoints
0.04 miParkingParking lot and visitor center
0.17 miGo rightBranch - stay right
0.33 miBenchBench
0.38 mi1st BoardwalkFirst boardwalk
0.42 miKeep leftKeep going left
0.49 miWaterWater break on a platform
0.52 miRope PathRope path
0.56 miGo leftBranch - go left
0.66 miStay leftBranch - stay left
0.67 miMowed trailBranch - go left onto mowed trail
0.91 miBenchBench
0.95 miGo straightIntersection - go straight across
0.98 miGo straightIntersection - go straight
1.22 miSidetrailGo right on side trail, then return and go left
1.41 miRight to the centerBranch - go right to the visitors center
1.47 miTrail EndTrail end
Trail map - Loop Trail
Altitude chart - Loop Trail
Difficulty: Easy
Terrain : Flat
Trail surface: Grassy
Trail surface: Gravel
Trail surface: Rock
Type: Loop
View: Open
County: Cottonwood
State: Minnesota
Country: United States of America
Jeffers Petroglyphs Historic Site
Minnesota Historical Society Site
Printable trail map in PDF format (59 Mb download)
Printable trail map in PNG format (4 Mb download)
Waypoints in CSV format
Waypoints in KML format
Instructions on using a trail description page
Instructions on using a trail map printout
Trails in the surrounding area
Area map for Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota (3 additional trails)
Area map for Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin (6 additional trails)
Area map for Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota (3 additional trails)
Area map for Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and South Dakota (5 additional trails)