13 to 14 July 2021
After last year’s travels along the South Shore of Lake Superior, it was time to visit the North Shore. It would have been ideal to spend a night near Grand Marais to make the most of our time, but the resorts and nice hotels in the area all required multiple night stays or were priced well above what we wanted to spend, so we spent both nights in Duluth. Our hotel was in the Canal Park area of Duluth which is the city’s main tourist attraction.
Duluth Canal Lakewalk
The first day we drove as far as Gooseberry Falls State Park, about 40 miles north of Duluth. We took the scenic drive from Brighton Beach to Stoney Point on Congdon Boulevard, which was nice but not as scenic as advertised. We made stops in Two Harbors at The Duluth and Iron Range Depot and Two Harbors Lighthouse. On the way back, we had to stop at local favorite Betty’s Pies, just north of Two Harbors and packed with travelers. In the evening we had plenty of time to get dinner in Canal Park, watch the Aerial Bridge in action, and stroll along the Lakewalk.
Lake Superior North Shore Drive including Gooseberry Falls and Split Rock Lighthouse
The next day we took the North Shore drive as far as we could go in a Covid world, about 150 miles, to Pigeon River along the Canadian border in Grand Portage State Park. We skipped the Grand Portage National Monument and instead concentrated our time hiking the Falls Trail. It was a nice outing. The river was shallow, we could have easily walked across the river to Canada. It would have been smarter to stop along the way and drive back to Duluth in the dark but instead we opted to sightsee heading south. The problem became a lack of daylight. We stopped at Split Rock Lighthouse but had to skip Temperance River Falls, Palisade Head and High Falls Trail in Tettegouche State Park. What can I say, poor planning.
Grand Portage State Park and the Pigeon River