About CFC

The Cloquet Forestry Center has been the primary research and education forest for the University of Minnesota since 1909. Located in the Lake Superior watershed at the southern edge of the boreal forest, this experimental forest is a primary research and education site for researchers, natural resource managers, students, and members of the public to understand the complex systems of forest management, ecosystems resilience, and sustainable management of forest and natural resource-based systems.

The CFC is located three miles west of the City of Cloquet and lies within the boundaries of the Fond du Lac Reservation of Lake Superior Chippewa. The CFC is home to the Sustainable Forests Education Cooperative (SFEC) and Minnesota Tree Improvement Cooperative (MTIC). The CFC forest is open to public recreation and gathering that does not conflict with research activities. (Please review our recreation and gathering guidelines before your visit.)

Research, education, and forest management projects at the CFC explore holistic and individual aspects of forest ecosystem communities such as:

  • Silviculture
  • Wildlife populations and habitat (wolf, fisher, ruffed grouse)
  • Forest genetics
  • Ecology, entomology, pathology and hydrology
  • Youth education
  • Climate change effects on forest productivity

We have been proactively engaging with our forest’s ecological, economic, and cultural health and wellness through forest management actions since 1909. Our broad forest management goals are to sustain and promote:

  1. Educational opportunities
  2. Research opportunities
  3. Outreach opportunities
  4. A diversity of cover types and growth stages
  5. Wildlife habitat quality
  6. Water and soil quality
  7. Historical and cultural resources

We do this through a mix of ecologically-based active (hands-on) and passive (intentionally hands-off) forest management solutions. See the current Forest Management Plan for more detail.

To complement our research and outreach mission, the CFC facilities are used to support professional development programs, education, and meetings by a variety of organizations. We are also home to the University of Minnesota Extension Regional Office, Cloquet, which works with the local community on issues related to rural health, natural resources, and education.

Our center is one of 10 unique Research and Outreach Centers throughout Minnesota led by the University of Minnesota’s College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS).