Protecting the Cannon River Valley
AmberBeth VanNingen St. Olaf College
ES 399 Spring 2004 Northfield, MN 55057 Senior Project
"The man who is often thinking that it is better to be somewhere else than where he is excommunicates himself." Henry David Thoreau, Journals
Minnesota: land of 10,000 lakes, acres of untouched forest, miles of Lake Superior shoreline, and the largest wilderness area east of the Mississippi River. However, it is also home to smaller, less conspicuous areas that are closer to home than one might think. Minnesota's real jewels may be the small preserves out our back doors. Minnesotans do not have to go far to gain a "wilderness experience." We can stay in touch with the land right around us by exploring what is out there and becoming involved in it.
The Cannon River area of southeastern Minnesota is an area rich in natural areas, but that is far from the large tracts of wilderness in the north. The following pages introduce different systems used in the Cannon River Area, and throughout state of Minnesota, to protect some of these smaller jewels. All three of these systems are ones used by differing bodies of government. Use the links at the left for an introduction to conservation, the idea of sense of place and the Cannon River or go directly to one of three featured systems and places and beyond.