MidwestWeekends.com — Your Travel Guide to the Upper Midwest

Where to find mosquito-free camping

Breathe a sigh of relief in southeast Minnesota.

Campsite on Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

© Beth Gauper

Already tired of mosquitoes? Head for southeast Minnesota.

That's karst country, where porous limestone lies just under the surface and rain sinks into fast-moving underground streams that are chilled to 48 degrees when they run through the many cave systems. Trout like it, but mosquitoes don't. There's no standing water, so there's nowhere for them to breed.

That makes camping virtually mosquito-free at Forestville/Mystery Cave, Whitewater and Beaver Creek Valley state parks. Deb Erickson, office manager at Forestville, says people used to camping on Minnesota's North Shore are pleasantly surprised and often ask why there are so few mosquitoes.

"All the parks are like that in southeast Minnesota,'' she says. "It's kind of strange, but very wonderful.''

And remember that Minnesota state parks allow campsite reservations a year in advance. So if you think you might to want to camp at this time next year, be on the phone or on-line at 8 a.m. on the day you want to arrive next summer, 866-857-2757.

For details, see Camping in state parks and Cave country.

Last updated on July 14, 2010