Lusten-Tofte area offers cross-country skiers a lengthy
network of trails.
The village of Grand Marais and its natural harbor
are nestled along the shore of Lake Superior. The town
features numerous art galleries, artists’ workshops, a folk
art school and a community theater, the Grand Marais
Playhouse. Gift shops, cafes, and harbor views encourage
visitors to linger. Kayaking, mountain biking, hiking and
charter fishing are all popular activities here. The Gunflint
Trail starts in Grand Marais, and the Superior National
Forest ranger station in town provides information on
trails and lakes in the forest surrounding this woodland
road. In the winter, snowmobiling and cross-country
skiing are the draws.
Fourteen miles northeast along the shore is Judge
C.R. Magney State Park, where a rugged mile-long
footpath leads to the Devil’s Kettle waterfall on the Brule
River. Minnesota’s largest waterfall is along the northern
border at Grand Portage State Park, where the Pigeon
River rushes over a 200-foot-drop; a short, accessible trail
leads to overlooks of the falls.
The Grand Portage National Monument features a
reconstructed North West Company fur-trading post from
the late 1700s, and focuses on Ojibwe culture and the life
of fur traders. The Grand Portage Casino offers gaming
action. Passenger boats depart from Grand Portage for
the 22-mile trip across Superior to Isle Royale National
Park, a favorite with hikers and backpackers.
Grand Portage Heritage Center
Wilderness & Lake
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
(BWCAW), part of Superior National Forest, is a vast
preserve of lakes and woods that stretches for about 100
miles along Minnesota’s northern border. More than a
thousand pristine lakes and streams shimmer in this
pine-forested, stony-cliffed wilderness. The beauty of the
Boundary Waters can be enjoyed from the comfort of a
lakeside cabin at the edge of the BWCAW or the solitude
of a remote, paddle-in campsite.
Most of the Boundary Waters lakes are“paddle-only,”
designated for use by non-motorized canoes. The BWCAW
has no roads or buildings; it’s populated only by wildlife.