Fall Colors photo

Now that the temperatures have dropped over the past few days, we find our thoughts to starting to drift toward fall. We’re excited to exchange our shorts and sandals for a cozy sweatshirt and start planning fall adventures.

To help you do the same, we’ve compiled a list of North Shore fall drives. Check out the list routes below, and be sure to click the link below each for detailed directions and a route map.

This map shows an overview of the top drives for fall colors
Fall Color Drives Map

1. Seven Bridges Road (1.9 miles), Duluth
This 4-mile route passes over a series of bridges over Amity Creek. The road starts at Lake Superior and follows the cascading creek up to the top of the bluffs where you’ll see spectacular views of Lake Superior.
Seven Bridges directions and map>

2. Scenic Highway 61 (149 miles), Duluth to Grand Portage
Follow highway 61 from the east side of Duluth all the way to Grand Portage, or just travel sections of the road. You will pass by many beautiful vistas overlooking Lake Superior and the Sawtooth Mountains. Stop at any of the popular North Shore destinations along the way and you’re sure to find bright colors from maple, aspen/poplar, birch, tamarack and/or oak trees.
Scenic Highway 61 directions and map>

3. Silver Bay to Birch Lake Dam (57.7 miles), Silver Bay
This scenic highway passes through unique and beautiful territory. Travelers should keep their eyes peeled in hopes of seeing wildlife like deer, moose and wolves.
Silver Bay to Birch Lake Dam directions and map>

4. Heartbreak Ridge (15.6 miles), Tofte
Drive through a beautiful canopy of maples on this short, but breathtakingly beautiful route.
Heartbreak Ridge directions and map>

5. The Grade (50 miles), Tofte to Lutsen
This 15 mile route between the Sawbill and Caribou Trail takes people down an old railroad grade that was used when white pine was logged in the area. It is an excellent drive to take anytime of the year, but especially during the fall when the leaves are changing. Keep an eye open for moose as some have been spotted on this route.
The Grade directions and map>

6. Maple Hill (4.7 miles), Grand Marais
Maple trees line this short route which takes drivers by Maple Hill Church and make it great for early season drives.
Maple Hill directions and map>

7. Trout Lake Road (34.2 miles), Grand Marais
An excellent gravel drive outside of Grand Marais for viewing sugar maples in the early fall season. There are many spots along the route, including public lake docks, where you can stop and get out of your vehicle to take in the season with all of your senses.
Trout Lake Road directions and map>