Fall is one of the most captivating seasons on the North Shore and Gunflint Trail. Our deep green forests transform into brilliant fields of red, orange and yellow over the course of a few short weeks. Whether your fall color viewing plan is to go for a hike, bike or a scenic fall color drive - we're here to help guide you towards the best activities.
For generations, we have been a welcoming destination for friends near and far looking to get away. That will never change. However, due to COVID-19 regulations, there are a few things you’ll want to know to prepare for your upcoming visit.
Tell Us A Story - Surviving social distancing through storytelling and imagery
During this time of social distancing and isolation, let's join together to share stories of your favorite times in Cook County. Tell us a story about the time you encountered a moose on the Gunflint Trail, or when you taught your kid how to skip rocks in the Grand Marais harbor. Tell us about that time you learned to ski at Lutsen Mountains or about how all of your senses were heightened the first time you felt the raw power of nature crash down High Falls in Grand Portage.
Winter means something different to everyone. Up in Cook County, Minnesota, it means freedom. Freedom to explore. Freedom to push your limits. Freedom to adventure to your heart’s content, and then relax and recuperate for as long as necessary. No judgment! Up here, winter slows things down, so you can focus on whatever you need in the here and now.
So… what winter adventures do you want to tick off your bucket list on your next stay in Cook County? Here are just a few for inspiration.
For many, seeing the northern lights is a once in a lifetime opportunity. It’s a chance to experience the mystical, feel connected with something almost otherworldly and experience natural beauty at its utmost perfection. There is simply no comparison to seeing the northern lights with your own eyes.
Beware the Gales of November
Fall is a tumultuous time of year along Minnesota’s North Shore. We’re battered by huge, icy swells that pommel our shoreline. Every day is a gamble. Will the Gales of November make it impossible to take to the water? Or will the lake be still as a sheet of glass? Every year, Lake Superior sees about 30 inches of precipitation, most of which falls May through October. Over the years, we’ve had some truly incredible storms pass through the region, wreaking havoc, sinking ships and making the news.
The Minnesota Sea Grant has conducted extensive research into why, exactly, so many epic storms develop around Lake Superior. It all has to do with climate, and what is going on in the air above the big lake. The experts explain that “collisions between belts of low and high pressure from the Gulf of Mexico and Canada generate the region's wildest storms and blizzards.”
During November, the winds really start to pick up. This is caused by low-pressure systems passing over the lake, bringing on the Gales of November. During this time, wind speeds can easily reach 50 miles per hour, and gusts can exceed 100 mph. In Cook County, this natural phenomenon is a cause to celebrate.
Canoeing is a sport that can be intimidating. There are rules about boats, PFD’s, and a lot of flak from experts on how to hold your paddle correctly. But once you know what you’re doing, padding through the BWCAW can be one of the most memorable and influential experiences of your life. To get you started, or “Wet Your Paddle”, Gunflint Trail Outfitters have banded together to offer newbies a chance to try an hour of paddling for free. AND they’ll even give you one of those experts I talked about earlier to teach you how to do it! This program, called Wet Your Paddle, is an incredible deal and a great way to spend a few hours on your annual family vacation learning something new, together! To prepare you for your first Wet Your Paddle adventure, here is some more information on canoeing, the BWCAW, and how to strut your stuff in the backcountry.
In honor of this wonderful season, we’ve compiled a list of 19 awesome springtime adventures you won’t want to miss.
Topics: Events, Grand Marais, Gunflint Trail, Scenic Drives, Services, Spring, Summer, Art, History & Culture, Grand Portage, Lutsen Tofte Schroeder, Outdoors, Northern Lights & Night Sky, BWCAW, Lake Superior
Spring is in the air, and it is time to plan a getaway. Whether you’re looking to escape the confines of your everyday life for a few days or even a week, planning can come with a tinge of sadness when it means leaving your four-legged family members behind. Finding a dog sitter or taking family and friends up on offers to keep your dog company while you’re away is all well and good, but up in Cook County, Minnesota, we say bring your fur-babies, too… the more, the merrier!
With so many dog-friendly activities and a wealth of lodging options that welcome canine family members and pet-loving locals everywhere you turn, Cook County is a fun destination on two legs and four.