During winter in the land of lakes, snowshoes make it easy and fun to get off the beaten path.
There are many trails to chose from, but you can also go off-trail as well. Off-trail snowshoeing is a whole different world. The snow that barely covered our toes on the edge of the ski trail came up to our knees under the tree cover. On a trail, your path is decided for you. Off trail, who knows where you’ll end up — or what you’ll see?
Minnesota has plenty of everything, marked and groomed snowshoe trails as well as remote wilderness. If each section of the popular Superior Hiking Trail (SHT) is hiked separately, is a total of 326 miles. SHT features climbs to rock outcroppings and cliffs, and lower sections that take you down into numerous river and creek valleys. Bridges are provided to assist in most stream crossings. A major reason for the popularity of SHT (summer and winter) is the overlooks of Lake Superior, the surrounding mountains and forests. Trail sections follow along rivers and creeks, offering views of waterfalls and rapids. At its lowest point, SHT runs along the Lake Superior; at its highest point it is over 1000 feet above the lake. For more information, be sure to visit the Superior Hiking Trail Association’s website.
George Washington Memorial Pines. This preserve, just six miles up the Gunflint Trail from Grand Marais, is a good place to track small animals. There’s a three-mile trail through swamp and pines.
Snowshoe Trails Near Grand Marais
Northern Light Lake Trail: Thirteen miles from Grand Marais, this one-mile trail climbs up Blueberry Hill to its bald basalt pate and a panorama of the lake and Brule River stretching into the distance. Sometimes the parking lot isn’t plowed, however.
Honeymoon Bluff Trail: Sixteen miles farther, turn off on County Road 66 and drive two miles, just past the Flour Lake Campground. From here, this trail climbs wooden steps to an iron-streaked cliff high above the labyrinthine waters of Hungry Jack Lake and, beyond, West Bearskin Lake. It’s especially lovely at sunset.
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park
Tettegouche State Park
Sawtooth Outfitters in Tofte
Lutsen Rec in Lutsen
Cascade Lodge in Lutsen
Stone Harbor in Grand Marais
Golden Eagle Lodge on the Gunflint Trail
Gunflint Lodge on the Gunflint Trail
Gunflint Pines on the Gunflint Trail
Tags: North Shore Snowshoeing, Grand Marais Snowshoeing, North Shore Winter Activities, Grand Marais Winter Activities
Grand Marais & North Shore Winter Activities
With an average of 120 inches of snow per year, you would expect Grand Marais & North Shore Winter Activities to include just about everything you could want to do on this slippery white stuff! You’d be right, and you can enjoy it on the 400 km of groomed cross-country ski trails (the biggest such network in North America), 450 miles of snowmobile trails, and 1,000 acres of downhill skiing and snowboarding.
“Lutsen Mountains” is the largest ski area in the Midwest. It features four interconnected mountains of the Sawtooth Mountain range with 95 runs that spread across 1000 acres overlooking Lake Superior. These four peaks include Moose Mountain, Eagle Mountain, Ullr Mountain and Mystery Mountain.
The Sawtooth Mountains are located amongst the rugged terrain found along the North Shore of Lake Superior. Rising over 1000 feet from the shores of Lake Superior at angles that vary from 8 to 20 degrees, they drop off steeply on their northern slopes. They were named “sawtooth” due to their relatively uniform size, angles, and regularity of spacing as viewed from Lake Superior to the east, from which their crest line creates a profile that resembles the teeth of an enormous saw.
From the west, rising from the Temperance River, major peaks of the mountain range include Eagle Mountain at Lutsen (tallest), Carlton Peak above Temperance River State Park, Leveaux Mountain and a knob immediately across the Onion River, Moose Mountain, peaks along a ridge above Cascade River State Park, Murphy Mountain, and Sawtooth Bluff above Grand Marais.
View Grand Marais & North Shore Winter Activities Guide.