One of our best attractions is the Great Outdoors! Pursue your favorite activity - wild turkey hunting, kayaking, golfing, hiking, fishing or bird watching. Pick your pastime and join us in Thief River Falls! Information on all of these attractions can be found here or at the Thief River Falls Travel Information Center: 102 Main Ave. North.
Wild Turkey Hunting
The Thief River Falls area is home to one of the newest flocks of turkeys in the state. The MNDNR introduced over 200 turkeys to the Thief River Falls area from 2006-2008. Since then, the population has grown to abundance and continues to spread throughout northwest Minnesota.
New to scouting turkeys? Try spotting birds mid-day out in agriculture fields near large tracts of oak trees. If you are an early riser, try to beat the sunrise and listen for birds gobbling on their roost trees before the morning fly-down. The Thief River Falls area offers over 70,000 acres of state land and the lowest hunter density in the state.
The state hunting regulations have also been simplified. As of 2019, hunters hoping to bag a tom turkey with a firearm will no longer be restricted to a single permit area. With the exception of three major wildlife management areas, a spring turkey license will provide the opportunity to hunt all permit areas in the state. All spring turkey hunters can simply purchase a license over the counter. “We’re making it easier to hunt wild turkeys in Minnesota,” said Leslie McInenly, wildlife populations program manager with the DNR. “Turkey restoration has been a great success for the state, and over time, we’ve been able to relax and simplify hunting regulations.”
According to MNDNR hunting regulations, firearm turkey hunters age 18 and over are restricted to the time period selected at time of purchase. Hunters age 17 and younger may hunt statewide for the entire season (April 15-May 31) with firearms or archery equipment. Archery-only license holders may hunt statewide for the entire season (April 15-May 31). Click here for a full list of rules & regulations.
Northwestern Minnesota is one of the best bird watching areas in the United States, with over 280 species of birds at the Agassiz National Wildlife Refuge alone. The other bird watching options include the TRF Treatment Ponds just outside city limits, and Agassiz Valley.
Thief River Falls is located on the Pine to Prairie birding trail, Minnesota’s FIRST birding trail and connected with Manitoba to form an international birding trail! Situated at the juncture of 3 major ecosystems—tall-grass prairie, boreal forests and aspen parkland—this Northwestern Minnesota trail provides a unique collection of habitats which provide homes for a tremendous variety of birds.
You’ll find excellent fishing year-round on the rivers. Walleye, Northern Pike, Catfish, Small Mouth Bass and Pan Fish.
The Red Lake River offers excellent fishing. Whether you’re in waders, a float tube, canoe or just fishing from the bank, the opportunity for walleyes, northern pike, smallmouth bass, crappies and a host of other species is great!
Accessing the river is not a problem with two boat landings within the city limits. You can also get to the river through both city parks and below the dam. With parking lots on both sides of the river and a walkway on the east side, access is easy.
Kayaking or Paddle Boarding
Rent a Kayak or Paddle Board from Family Time Racquetball & Fitness Club and enjoy the river's full potential! Rentals for full or half days, with helpful instruction available. For more information, call 218-681-6709.
Launch your kayak or paddle board at the new Kayak Launch Dock located at LaFave Park!
The 48 acre Greenwood Trails Recreation Area is a wooded trail system right along the Red Lake River and Greenwood Street. These trails are unpaved and give you that country feel while remaining in city limits. Go for a hike all year round, and try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing in the snowy months!
Like history? Like nature? Then take a stroll down our delightful River Walk! Fifteen pictographs (like the Ojibwe Village, Ice Harvesting and the Meehan Sawmill) are found along several miles of trail, showing what the view along the river was like many years ago. The River Walk travels through town along the Red Lake and Thief Rivers, passing by nine parks, three forest trails, the dam and historical sites such as the Soo Line Railroad Depot and the statue of Chief Meskokonaye (Red Robe). A river walk was installed along the Red Lake River in Hartz Park, becoming one of the longest and most beautiful of the River Walk segments. Brochures and print maps are available at Visit Thief River Falls and at area motels. Click here to download an electronic River Walk Trail Map. Don’t miss this wonderful Thief River Falls attraction!
If golf is your game, the Thief River Golf Club is a course you don’t want to miss. Located on Highway 32 just north of Thief River Falls along the winding banks of the Thief River; this picturesque, par 72, 18-hole course features 6,336 yards of golf. The course rating is 70.5 and it has a slope rating of 120.
While waiting for a tee time, golfers can loosen up on the driving range, sharpen their skills on the practice green or browse through the full stocked Pro Shop. Among its offerings are an assortment of clubs, clothing items and accessories as well as snacks and beverages. Visitors will also find a number of "old pros" at the course -- long-time members eager to share advice and a golf story or two, along with friendly staff to accomodate your needs. For more information about the Thief River Golf Club, call 218-681-2955.
Everyone loves miniature golf! Check out the 18-hole course at Falls Stay n' Play, at the junction of Hwy 59 N. & Hwy 1. W. They have an arcade and playground equipment for kids - and adult beverages for the parents! Open seven days a week during the summer months from 11am - 11pm. For more information, call 218-681-7066.
Located at Lion’s Park (Nora St. & Merriam Ave.) our 9-hole Disc Golf Course is open to the public free of charge. The course offers concrete tee pads, permanent mounted disc baskets, and custom-made tee signage. Tee off by throwing your disc, then count how many more throws it takes until you land in the "hole." Complete rules are posted in the park. Bring your own discs and come ready to enjoy a game of “disc golf/frolf”!
There is also a new Disc Golf Course at Oakland Park (located at the end of Baken Street)! Click here for more information on both courses and Disc Golf League: https://www.facebook.com/trdgl/
Take a dip at our public swimming beach located at LaFave Park (Crocker Ave. & Taft St.) This is a favorite hang-out for kids and adults during the summer months! There is playground equipment, picnic tables, volleyball/basketball courts and restrooms available.
Check out Franklin Indoor Pool (located at 300 Spruce Ave. S) for open swimming or lap swimming. The schedule and cost information can be found here: http://trfcommunityed.registryinsight.com/aquatics.
Tennis, Basketball or Sand Volleyball
Several of our city parks offer Tennis, Basketball or Sand Volleyball courts. Click here for a detailed list of all Thief River Falls parks: http://www.visittrf.com/parks.