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Chippewa City Church

There is little information available about the original native residents of Chippewa, a town that used to stand just east of Grand Marais. All that is left to hint at what life was like back when the town was alive is letters and photographs taken by European Settlers that made observations of the area. Only one building, that now serves as a stark reminder of what was once there, remains: the St. Francis Xavier Church.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this church was built under the direction of Father Specht in 1895 on land donated by Antoine and Antoinette Fillison. The community raised money by hand weaving baskets, filing them with baked goods, and selling them to fellow community members. Often times, lumberjacks were high bidders!

The church served as the only Catholic Church in Grand Marais from 1895-1916, until the opening of St. Johns. As the population of Chippewa City began to fall, so did the attendance and use of the church. It held its final mass at Christmas in 1936. To this day, the church stands tall and is the only physical remnant of what used to be such a vibrant community. To visit, call the museum and ask for opportunities at 218-387-2883.

To get there: One half mile North of Grand Marais, look for the brown historical marker. Just outside of town you’ll see an old white church on your right.

 


 

Cascade Vacation Rentals offers the largest selection of vacation rental homes, cabins, hotels and cottages on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Our rentals cover a large area from Duluth to Grand Portage and inland up the Caribou Trail, Gunflint Trail and throughout Cook County. View rentals by location (DuluthTwo HarborsSchroederTofteLutsenGrand MaraisGunflint Trail) or category type (pet-friendlylarge homes, inland lake homes, etc) at www.cascadevacationrentals.com.

 


Check back often for updates on where to go and the top things to do on your next North Shore visit.

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Posted on August 11th, 2017 in Outdoor Activities, Specials, Stories and Pictures, Travel, Uncategorized |


Our favorite things to do at Split Rock Lighthouse State Park

 

Split Rock Lighthouse State Park occupies the land surrounding the Split Rock Lighthouse, one of the most visited lighthouses in the country. The park is located outside of Two Harbors (2755 Split Rock Lighthouse Road) on the shore of Lake Superior.

The parks location offers visitors many beautiful views of The Lake and countless opportunities for hiking, biking, picnicking, fishing and, in winter, cross country skiing and snowshoeing. Of all of these things, five should be at the top of everyone’s to-do list.

1. Tour the lighthouse
The Lighthouse was built after many ships were lost in a fierce storm in November of 1905 and operated from 1910 until 1969. The lighthouse is open seasonally for tours and gives visitors the opportunity to view the lighthouse interior, lighthouse keeper’s home and other outbuildings on the site.

2. Visit the Pebble Beach
Pack a bag with a light lunch or just head down to the beach to skip some rocks. The beach provides excellent views of the lighthouse and is a great place to dip your toes in the water.

3. Bike the Gitchi-Gami State Trail
A 4-mile section of the paved Gitchi-Gami State Trail lies within the park. From the trail you’ll find a great view of the Middle Falls waterfall and will also catch a glimpse of the Upper and Lower Falls.

4. Hike the Split Rock River Loop Trail
With 12 miles of hiking trails within the park, there are many areas to explore. One noteworthy hike is the Split Rock River Loop Trail. What makes this trail noteworthy are its unique red rhyolite rock towers near the boundary of the park and the beautiful overlook of Lake Superior and the river valley on the east side of the trail.

5. Grab Some Binoculars and go Birding
This is an excellent place for birding, especially in the spring and fall months when many birds migrate along the shore of Lake Superior on what is known as the North Shore Birding Trail.  Split Rock State Park has been designated an Audubon Important Bird Area because of the presence of Peregrine Falcom aeries (nests). When you’re at the park, be sure to bring along a copy of the Split Rock State Park Bird Checklist in hopes that you can check off the Peregrine Falcon and many other birds.

Split Rock Lighthouse State Park Resources:
Park Map
Birding Checklist

 

VIEW OTHER TOP 5 LISTS:

Gooseberry Falls State Park
Tettegouche State Park
George H. Crosby Manitou State Park
Temperance River State Park
Cascade River State Park
Judge C.R. Magney State Park
Grand Portage State Park

 


 

Cascade Vacation Rentals offers the largest selection of vacation rental homes, cabins, hotels and cottages on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Our rentals cover a large area from Duluth to Grand Portage and inland up the Caribou Trail, Gunflint Trail and throughout Cook County. View rentals by location (DuluthTwo HarborsSchroederTofteLutsenGrand MaraisGunflint Trail) or category type (pet-friendlylarge homes, inland lake homes, etc) at www.cascadevacationrentals.com.

 


 

Check back often for updates on where to go and the top things to do on your next North Shore visit.

Posted on August 7th, 2017 in Uncategorized |


Top Hikes on the North Shore

Gooseberry Falls

 

Gooseberry Falls Hike, Two Harbors
Take the one-mile handicap accessible hike in Gooseberry State Park to the iconic main falls. These falls were recently voted as the best fall hiking trails in Minnesota. Hikers will find smaller crowds in the morning or late afternoon hours. To reach the state park, follow Highway 61 northeast for 13 miles.

 

Split Rock River Loop, Two Harbors
What makes this loop noteworthy is its unique red rhyolite rock towers near the boundary of the park, the beautiful overlook of Lake Superior and the river valley on the east side of the trail. While you’re hiking, keep an eye out for a peregrine falcon. Split Rock lighthouse is home to aeries of this once almost eradicated bird. Access the trail from Highway 61 northeast of Two Harbors at mile 43.5. Park on the left side of the highway.

 

Twin Lakes (Bean and Bear) Loop, Silver Bay
This challenging loop trail goes up and down three maple-covered ridges where hikers will find spectacular views of Bean and Bear Lakes at the top. It can be accessed from two locations: from the Penn Boulevard trailhead outside of Silver Bay for a 6.8 mile hike or from the Silver Bay visitor Center located on Outer Drive for a 7.6 mile hike. Both will bring you to the Twin Lakes Loop.

 

High falls to Two Step Falls, Silver Bay
View the 60-foot High Falls and Two Step Falls of the Baptism River on a difficult two-mile round-trip hike through Tettegouche State Park. Start at the trailhead in the park where the path will lead you to various overlooks of the High Falls, including one from a suspension bridge. Trails also give hikers the option to reach the base for a unique view of the falls. From the High Falls hikers can continue their hike to the Two Step Falls. As its name suggests, the fall has two drops. Both split and fall into a pool below.

 

Shovel Point, Silver Bay
Take the half-mile trail from the Tettegouche visitor center along Shovel Point to see many breathtaking views of the lake-side cliffs, sea caves, inland bluffs, and the mouth of the Baptism River. Once hikers reach the end of the out-and-back trail, they will see views of Lake Superior’s seemly endless shoreline that will leave them awestruck.

 

Temperance River Falls Hike, Schroeder
Hikers can see many beautiful waterfalls, pools, gorges and river potholes by hiking north of Highway 61 from the parking area along Highway 61. Hike as far as you like up the trail for views of the Temperance River cascades.

 

Beautiful fall colors on the on the Oberg Loop. Lutsen, Minnesota.

Oberg Mountain Loop, Tofte
The Oberg Mountain Loop is one of the most popular hikes on the North Shore, and rightly so! The two mile loop circles the top of the mountain and brings hikers to a number of lookouts with spectacular views of Leveaux Mountain, Moose Mountain, Oberg Lake and the Lake Superior Shoreline. Hike the loop counterclockwise for increasingly dramatic views. To access the trail, drive to the trailhead parking lot two miles north of Highway 61 on the Onion River Road.

 

White Sky Rock

Take the short but challenging one-third-mile hike from Caribou Trail to see a spectacular view of Caribou Lake and the surrounding Sawtooth Mountains. If you’re feeling adventurous, continue on the Superior Hiking Trail west to pristine Lake Agnes. There’s something about the shape of the lake and the beautiful overlooks that make this one of our favorite hikes anytime of the year. To get there from Lutsen, take the Caribou Trail north for 3.9 miles. Park in the parking lot located on the right-hand side of the road near the boat ramp. After parking, cross Caribou Trail and begin the hike up the Superior Hiking Trail spur trail to White Sky Rock.

 

Eagle Mountain,
The out-and-back trek up Eagle Mountain, Minnesota’s highest peak, is difficult, but worth it! The hike is seven miles round-trip and will bring you to places with spectacular views. The hike will take you past Whale Lake which is located halfway along the trail. From the peak you’ll also be able to view Lake Superior. Since two-thirds of the trail lies within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, you’ll need to get a self-issued permit at the entry point before you begin hiking.

From Lutsen drive east (toward Grand Marais) and take a left onto Caribou Trail (County Road 4). Follow Caribou Trail until it ends. Turn right onto FR170. Drive 3.5 miles to the Eagle Mountain Trailhead. Park in the parking lot on the left-hand side of the road.

 

Honeymoon Bluff, Gunflint Trail
This short half-mile trail takes hikers 200 feet above the beautiful Hungry Jack Lake. Since it is so short and the view is so great, hikers may feel like they’re cheating. Begin the hike on Clearwater Road (County Road 66). To get there from Grand Marais, take the Gunflint Trail for 27 miles and turn right onto Clearwater Road (County Road 66). Drive 3.25 miles.

 

Devil Track River Hike, Grand Marais/Gunflint Trail|
This trail is known for its red cliffs and waterfalls. To access the trail, drive four miles east of Grand Marais on Highway 61 and turn left onto Lindskog Road. Drive one mile to the trail.

 

Devil’s Kettle Hike
Hike along the Brule River in Judge C.R. Magney State Park to view the Upper, Devils Kettle and Lower Falls. Devils Kettle Falls is the most well-known of these three falls. The falls splits in two with one side heading downstream and the other into a deep mysterious hole. No one knows where the water in this hole disappears to. The hike to the falls is moderate in difficulty and requires hikers to ascend/descend 200 stairs. Begin at the state park’s main parking lot.

 

Grand Portage High Falls Hike, Grand Portage
Take this easy one-and-half mile trail and boardwalk in Grand Portage State Park to Minnesota’s highest waterfall. The 120-foot falls of the Pigeon River is known by many as Minnesota’s Niagra Falls.

 


 

Cascade Vacation Rentals offers the largest selection of vacation rental homes, cabins, hotels and cottages on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Our rentals cover a large area from Duluth to Grand Portage and inland up the Caribou Trail, Gunflint Trail and throughout Cook County. View rentals by location (DuluthTwo HarborsSchroederTofteLutsenGrand MaraisGunflint Trail) or category type (pet-friendlylarge homes, inland lake homes, etc) at www.cascadevacationrentals.com.

 

 

Check back often for updates on where to go and the top things to do on your next North Shore visit.

Posted on August 1st, 2017 in Uncategorized |


Gitchi-Gami State Trail

 

When the Gitchi Gami State Trail is completed, it will have 89 miles of paved recreational trail for anyone to enjoy. It will range from Two Harbors all the way to Grand Marais and be open to any sort of recreation—biking, jogging, walking, skating, you name it! It will be a beautiful way for people to explore the North Shore and still get an exercise while doing so!

 

As of now, 29 miles are complete including some segments from Silver Bay to Beaver Bay and some found between Tofte and Lutsen. No construction has been done in the past three years due to the lack of funding, but the hopeful individuals volunteering to make this dream a reality are determined to finish the project soon. With this trail in development and the wide shoulders on highway 61, the North Shore is becoming a perfect place for bikers to get out and enjoy a safe, scenic ride.

 

One of the coolest parts about the trail is that it will connect five state parks, four scientific and natural areas, and several historic sites. Unlike some trails, the Gitchi-Gami Trail requires no fee, although some spots may require a parking permit. To learn more about what this trail will have to offer or how to get involved, feel free to visit their website at www.ggta.org. A trail map can also be found here.

 


Cascade Vacation Rentals offers the largest selection of vacation rental homes, cabins, hotels and cottages on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Our rentals cover a large area from Duluth to Grand Portage and inland up the Caribou Trail, Gunflint Trail and throughout Cook County. View rentals by location (DuluthTwo HarborsSchroederTofteLutsenGrand MaraisGunflint Trail) or category type (pet-friendlylarge homes, inland lake homes, etc) at www.cascadevacationrentals.com.


 

Check back often for updates on where to go and the top things to do on your next North Shore visit.

Posted on July 25th, 2017 in Uncategorized |


Franklin Square/ 12th Street Beach

There aren’t many sandy beaches along the North Shore of Lake Superior. In fact, there are only a few. However, there’s a stretch of beach within walking distance from Canal Park that has beautiful fine-grained sand. It is known as the Franklin Square/12th Street Beach and is a perfect spot to enjoy a day at the beach. Tree protection from the busy streets make it a peaceful and an incredibly enjoyable spot to visit. And, the beach provides respite to many travelers (especially those with kiddos) who need a break before traveling up the shore from the south.

Along the beach are hiking trails, swimming access and bird watching spots for visitors to enjoy a day in the sun and away from all the tourist attractions. The waves crash along the shore during the windy fall and winter months that make for a wonderful sight to see.

To get there: Along highway 35 follow signs for Lake Avenue. Take Lake Avenue all the way across the Lift Bridge until you see signs for 12th Street Beach.

 


Cascade Vacation Rentals offers the largest selection of vacation rental homes, cabins, hotels and cottages on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Our rentals cover a large area from Duluth to Grand Portage and inland up the Caribou Trail, Gunflint Trail and throughout Cook County. View rentals by location (DuluthTwo HarborsSchroederTofteLutsenGrand MaraisGunflint Trail) or category type (pet-friendlylarge homes, inland lake homes, etc) at www.cascadevacationrentals.com.


Check back often for updates on where to go and the top things to do on your next North Shore visit.

Posted on July 18th, 2017 in Uncategorized |