Vermillion River (Minnesota)

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For the river in northeast Minnesota named Vermilion, see Vermilion River (Minnesota).
Vermillion River
Vermillion Falls in Hastings
Origin Eastern Scott County, Minnesota
Mouth Mississippi River
Basin countries United States
Length 59.6 miles (95.9 km)[1]
Basin area 335 mi²[2]

The Vermillion River is a 59.6-mile (95.9 km)[1] waterway that meanders through Scott County and Dakota County in Minnesota, entering the Mississippi River floodplain just south of Hastings. 13.5 miles (21.7 km) of it are designated as a trout stream, which is unusual for being so close to a metropolitan area.[2]

The portion of the river that supports trout is upstream, around the towns of Farmington; Empire and the City of Lakeville. Near the town of Vermillion, the water becomes too warm to support trout. Downstream from the falls on the south side of Hastings, the water becomes even warmer, supporting riverine species such as northern pike and freshwater drum. The Minnesota state record black crappie of 5.0 pounds was caught in the Vermillion River in 1940.[3] An old channel of the Vermillion River continues south from Hastings on the western edge of the Mississippi valley.

In the nineteenth and early twentieth century, the river was used for water power, supplying power to gristmills. A park surrounding the falls preserves the remains of a mill operated by Alexander Ramsey, one of the leading citizens of early Minnesota.

The Vermillion Stewards program engages people in cleanups, restoration events and educational activities and is operated by Friends of the Mississippi River.

Gallery of images[edit]


  1. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed October 4, 2012
  2. ^ a b Vermillion River Watershed Joint Powers Organization. "The Vermillion River Watershed". Dakota County. Retrieved 2006-11-11. 
  3. ^ "State record fish". Minnesota DNR. Retrieved 2007-03-31. 

Coordinates: 44°43′50″N 92°50′30″W / 44.7305372°N 92.84178°W / 44.7305372; -92.84178