Fri, 17 Apr 2020 20:08:14 GMT

With the summer season just around the bend, Colfax area residents can look forward to new opportunities for outdoor recreation. Landmark Conservancy recently purchased the 150-acre former gravel pit owned previously by Dunn County Highway Department. The property — known for years as the “Ferry Pit” – has two miles of Red Cedar River frontage and is located adjacent to Town of Colfax’s Felland Park.

Local environmental advocate and outdoor enthusiast Kathy Stahl of Elk Mound serves as chair of the management planning committee. Kathy stated she is “just tickled about the County Highway Department wanting it to be a public recreation area and working with Landmark to make that happen.” The nine-member planning committee is working to create a land management plan that will address public access and future land and water use. A small prairie remnant exists already, and expansion of prairie and wildlife habitat is being considered. Kathy listed partners and volunteers including local educators, restoration experts, municipal officials and local citizens, including students. “I’m so pleased about the diversity of people involved,” Kathy said. “Our committee members are from all walks of life.”

As Landmark Conservancy raises additional funds, they plan to convey the property to the Town of Colfax later this year. The new public area will be managed for low-impact public recreation including hiking, canoeing, fishing and kayaking and wildlife habitat. This project is part of a series of protected Red Cedar River riparian lands bordering the Otter Creek oak barrens. “There is a strong conservation ethic that exists up and down the Red Cedar River corridor, where numerous groups are involved in protecting, restoring and improving the watershed, said Landmark’s Conservation Director Rick Remington. “Dunn County has been an outstanding partner in this endeavor, and I’m looking forward to future collaboration with the Town of Colfax.”

To learn more about the new Town of Colfax public recreation area or find out how to get involved in planning, contact Kathy Stahl at 715-962-4010 or

Click photos for more details.