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the pond at Lewis and Clark State Park

Lewis and Clark State Park, which is located in Williams County, North Dakota, 18 miles east of Williston, encompasses 525 acres along the northern shore of Lake Sakakawea’s western region.

Established in 1973, this North Dakota state park is named for Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, the famed Corp of Discovery explorers, whose expedition camped nearby on April 17, 1805, during their historic trek through the state.

The park’s lakeside location provides excellent boating and fishing opportunities, and within its grassy prairielands, visitors can enjoy an informative, self-guided nature trail.

The magnificent buttes and undulating landscape of the North Dakota Badlands offer a stark, beautiful counterpoint to the lake’s peaceful panorama, all of which can be taken in from the park’s campground, shoreline, and hiking trails. Open year-round, Lewis and Clark State Park is a wonderland of outdoor activities for the whole family.

Activities

Lewis and Clark State Park offers a host of all-season outdoor experiences for all ages, including swimming, ice skating, trail hiking, wildlife viewing, camping, bird-watching, fishing, snowshoeing, kayaking, paddleboarding, mountain biking, and much more.

Boating at Lewis and Clark State Park

Located along the shores of Lake Sakakawea, America’s third-largest manmade lake, Lewis and Clark State Park features its own marina on the east end of the park that provides 20’-50’ slips, all protected by a breakwater. There is a floating fuel pump and septic pump-out service available as well as canoe, paddleboard, and kayak rentals, in season. There is a four-lane ramp near the marina, as well as a fish-cleaning area, parking, and restrooms.

Hiking at Lewis and Clark State Park

Offering 3 trails—two of which are multi-use—Lewis and Clark State Park’s hiking options provide easy trekking experiences for all ages and abilities. The routes are flat and scenic, and each has its own unique features:

  • Prairie Nature Trail: Easy, .4-mile loop trail with a 59’ elevation gain that crosses native prairieland and an old wagon track; includes interpretive stations and is for hikers only.
  • North Trail System: Easy, 5.2-mile out-and-back trail that includes panoramic views of the badlands and a boardwalk; biking is permitted on this trail system, and a portion is groomed during winter months for snowshoeing.
  • South Trail System: Easy, 2.6-mile, multi-loop trail with a 42’ elevation gain with prairie, badland, and lake views; excellent butterfly- and bird-watching opportunities. Part of this trail system is also groomed seasonally for snowshoeing.

Mountain Biking at Lewis and Clark State Park

Recreational biking and mountain biking are permitted on both the North and South Trail Systems in the park; the Prairie Nature Trail is for pedestrians only. Fat tire bikes are available to rent within the park, and rentals include helmets; be sure to call ahead to check for availability, as equipment rentals are first-come, first-served.

Snowshoeing and Ice Skating at Lewis and Clark State Park

Open year-round, Lewis and Clark State Park is also a destination for winter-centric outdoor activities. Portions of two of the park’s hiking trails (four miles of the North and South Trail Systems) are groomed for snowshoeing; gear can be rented on a first-come, first-served basis in the park. In addition, when ice depth on the lake has been declared safe, the marina area is cordoned off as an ice-skating rink.

Fishing at Lewis and Clark State Park

World-class, year-round fishing in Lake Sakakawea is popular at Lewis and Clark State Park. State fishing licenses are required, and all regulations and fishing seasons must be followed. Depending on the season, anglers could catch species such as walleye, sauger, smallmouth bass, and northern pike. There is a fish-cleaning station at the marina, and tackle can be purchased at the nearby Trader’s Bay visitor’s center.

Nature & Wildlife at Lewis and Clark State Park

The Lewis and Clark State Park is home to a mixed-grass prairie, which features a self-guided nature tour with interpretive displays. Visitors with an interest in birdwatching can enjoy identifying feathered friends like gray catbirds, lazuli buntings, turkey vultures, horned larks, and yellow warblers. The prairie hilltops are also excellent for butterfly sightings, and sharp-eyed lepidopterists may spot a Pawnee or common banded skipper among the seasonal blooms.

Pets

Dogs are welcome in the state park—as long as they are leashed at all times. There is also a dog park located beside the picnic shelter in the campground.

Camping

Located at the northern end of Lewis and Clark State Park, this large campground features 96 campsites; 41 have full hookups (50-amp service), 47 offer electric and water only, and 8 are primitive tenting sites. There are also 5 sites for large groups, 2 of which have full hookups and 3 with electric and water only.

In addition to available WiFi service, there are many other guest amenities, including a convenience store, diner, lake dock, BBQ area, playground, dog park, amphitheater, marina, boat ramp, and beach. The campground is open year-round, and pets are welcome but must be leashed; there are also two seasonal cabins available to rent.

Park Location

Lewis and Clark State Park
4904 119th Road NW
Epping, ND 58843
Phone: 701.859.3071

Park Website
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