Stony Point Research Natural Area

[photo:] Stony Point RNA. Photo by Lucy Tyrrell, USDA Forest Service.

The RNA contains wet-mesic ecosystems with an undisturbed, old-growth stand of black ash-American elm-red maple (Fraxinus nigra-Ulmus americana-Acer rubrum) containing many spring ephemerals and spring-blooming herbs. Several listed species are known to be present on the site, including the state and federally Threatened gray wolf (Canis lupus) and the state listed species of special concern northern myotis (Myotis septentrionalis).

Ecological Information

Physical and Climatic Conditions

Nearest weather station, with distance and direction from RNA:
Winnibigoshish Dam weather station is located 10 miles east, south-east of Stony Point.
Annual precipitation (type, seasonal distribution) :
Average annual precipitation is 26.7 inches (67.8 cm), with 11.3inches (28.7cm) falling in summer. Average annual snowfall is 43.7 inches (110.9 cm).
Maximum and minimum temperatures:
Annual: 28.8 ºF, 51.1 ºF
January: -5.4 ºF, 16.6 ºF
July: 57.2 ºF, 80.9 ºF
Elevation ranges from approximately 1300 feet (396 m) at the shore of Lake Winnibigoshish to 1313 feet (400 m) within the interior of Stony Point.
Geology and Soils:
The RNA is located within the Bemidji Sand Plain on a gently rolling ground moraine. Beach ridges also occur in the southeast. Soils range from silt loam over clay loam with a thick mantle of humus in the west to sandy beach ridges in the southeast. North of the beach ridges are organic soil wetlands and clayey lacustrian soils.
Aquatic Features:
The site is located on the north shore of Lake Winnibigoshish.

Ecological Classification & Inventory

Northern Minnesota Drift and Lake Plains (212N)
Chippewa Plains (212Na)
Landtype Associations:
Heavy loam moraine (J7), Level, poorly drained moraine (J10), Sand capped till (J11), Deep organic (J13), Shrub swamp (J15), Marsh (M), Lacustrine plain, layered sandy and silty (K27), Somewhat poorly drained lacustrine plain (K30), Very poorly drained lacustrine plain (K35), Deep organic (K39).
Plant Communities:
lowland brush 76 acres
sand beach/marsh 11 acres
SAF Cover Types (list acres) Kuchler Types (list acres):
6 Aspen (92)  
39 Black ash-American elm-red maple (225)  
Common Shrub Species:
Beaked hazelnut (Corylus cornuta), choke-cherry (Prunus virginiana), dogberry (Ribes cynosbati), dwarf raspberry (Rubus pubescens).
Common Herbaceous Species:
Wild leek (Allium tricoccum), spring beauty (Claytonia virginica), dutchman’s breeches (Dicentra cucullaria), wood anemone (Anemone quinquefolia), alpine enchanter’s nightshade (Circaea alpina), nettle (Laportea canadensis), blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides), wild ginger (Asarum canadense).
Common Mammal Species:
Gray wolf (Canis lupus), northern myotis (Myotis septentrionalis).

Related Reports and Publications

Hale, C.M. 1996. Comparison of Structural and Compositional Characteristics and Coarse Woody Debris Dynamics in Old-Growth Versus Mature Hardwood Forests of Minnesota, USA. M.S. Thesis, University of Minnesota - Duluth.

Wendt, Keith; Shadis, David A.; Sather, Nancy. 1991. Establishment Record of the Stony Point Research Natural Area within the Chippewa National Forest. Unpublished report on file at the Northern Research Station, Rhinelander, 31 pages.

Last Modified: August 19, 2021