The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently accepted a donation of 2,751 acres of land in Cass County in north-central Minnesota from The Nature Conservancy. The property is adjacent to more than 200,000 acres of land owned by the county, the DNR and the U.S. Forest Service.
The property contains mixed forests of pine, hardwoods, small ponds and wetlands and more than 3,000 feet of shoreline on Camp Lake. More than half of the property is within the Leech Lake watershed. The land includes more than five miles of grant-in-aid snowmobile trails. The donation will bring about more opportunities for hunting, fishing and paddling along undeveloped shoreline, hiking, bird watching and other activities.
The Potlatch Corp. previously owned and managed the property and The Nature Conservancy acquired it in May. The nonprofit acquired the property with $3.1 million in private money raised as part of the Minnesota Forest Legacy Partnership, a coalition that includes business and conservation groups, along with the DNR. The groups have worked together to conserve more than 338,000 acres of industrial forest land to provide wildlife habitat, protect jobs and ensure public access for outdoor recreation.