Fort Ransom might feel remote, but for many, that’s a big part of its charm. Visitors who head to North Dakota to take in some of the incredible natural beauty of the place feel like they’ve stumbled upon a hidden gem.
And the truth is they’re right!
Fort Ransom State Park is a short drive from both Fargo and Bismark, two of the biggest cities in North Dakota. So, if you’re visiting the area for business or pleasure, make sure to include a day trip.
Here are some attractions you’ll find in and around Fort Ransom State Park.
Things to Do in Fort Ransom State Park
There are plenty of activities to keep you occupied when visiting the park. These are some of our favorites.
Go on a hike
Fort Ransom is tucked away in the Sheyenne River Valley which has a beautiful mix of wooded areas, rolling rivers, and grasslands to explore. This makes for a perfect landscape for hiking.
The park has over 20 miles of trails that can be used year round for walking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and horseback riding. For new hikers or people looking for short and easy walks, you won’t find a better spot. Popular trails include the Little Twig Nature Trail and the Pederson Hills Trail.
Are you visiting in the wintertime? The park offers cross-country ski rentals.
Spend some time on the river
For many, a few hours paddling via canoe or kayak equals the perfect day. If that sounds perfect to you, then you’ll love spending some time on the Sheyenne River. The river runs right through Fort Ransom State Park and you can rent the equipment you need inside the park too.
If you want to explore further reaches via the river, there are some local shuttles that will take you to launch points.
Fort Ransom is named for an old military outpost that was built here after the Civil War. It’s also a spot that was opened up to homesteaders; people who moved from the East to rural parts of the country to acquire plots of land. This homesteading culture is still celebrated in North Dakota today and especially at the park.
If you’re in the area during mid-July and early September each year, you might encounter Sodbuster Days. Head to the Sunne Demonstration Farm and check it out. Visitors can experience exactly what it was like to live and work on a 19th-century farm with demonstrations, a parade, and live music.
Add Fort Ransom to Your List
After you spend any length of time in this part of North Dakota, you’ll see why so many people love visiting. It’s truly a unique spot where you can learn quite a bit about the history of the region in a fun way. So, if you’re planning your next vacation and want to find a one of a kind spot, consider Fort Ransom State Park.