Icelandic State Park
|Icelandic State Park|
|North Dakota State Park|
The Tongue River in Icelandic State Park
|Elevation||971 ft (296 m) |
|Area||912 acres (369 ha)|
|Management||North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department|
|Website: Icelandic State Park|
Icelandic State Park is a North Dakota state park located on Lake Renwick in Akra Township, Pembina County, 5 miles (8.0 km) west of Cavalier. The park's 912 acres (369 ha) include the Pioneer Heritage Center and the Gunlogson Homestead and Nature Preserve. The park was established to preserve evidence of the Icelandic heritage in North Dakota after G. B. Gunlogson donated 200 acres (81 ha) of his family's lands to the state in 1963.
The Gunlogson Arboretum Nature Preserve is an arboretum and nature preserve that lies along both banks of the Tongue River and is dominated by mature elm and basswood. The land had been in the Gunlogson family for over 80 years when it was donated to North Dakota.
The preserve's many rare species include plants such as the ladyfern (Athyrium filix-femina), water arum (Calla palustris), and two-seeded sedge (Carex disperma) and animals including the piliated woodpecker (Drycopus pilatus), western wood-pewee (Contopus sordidulus), and the finescale dace (Phoxinus neogaeus).
The preserve's woody plants include species of maple (Acer negundo), birch (Betula papyrifera), dogwood (Cornus stolonifera), hazel (Corylus cornuta), hawthorn (Crataegus rotundifolia), silverberry (Elaeagnus angustifolia), ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica), quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides), balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera), chokecherry (Prunus virginiana), willow (Salix amygdaloides, Salix bebbiana), American linden (Tilia americana), and elm (Ulmus americana, Ulmus pumila). About a hundred other species are also represented on the site.
The park offers both primitive and modern camping in addition to fishing, swimming and boating on Lake Renwick. The nature preserve has three miles of trails for hiking and cross-country skiing.