There are not many guide books about Minnesota so I hope these will be great guides too.
I did not go camping, I wouldn’t even glamp. Maybe. We stayed in a local AmericaInn Hotel in Silver Bay, MN. If you follow my instagram and saw my story of my trip you would have seen the “room tour” of “that’s where we sleep, thats the bathroom and that’s the door”. But, it was the perfect stay for being close to everything we want to do and right off the road. Our first day was just to get there, a stop over in Duluth for food and walk the boardwalk. I’ve been to Duluth a lot, my grandmother lived in Duluth. We ate at one place I new of called Grandma’s. I like it, its local, its fun, the staff are lovely and the food is great. Because I’m not eating meat while state side I had a wild rice burger which I liked A LOT. It is actually a popular thing up here. Wild Rice is an important food for the Native American’s. While in Duluth we saw this sign that read “I’m reading for an adventure” and we were.
We drove on State highway 61 up to Grand Maria, a small tourist town, an hour south from the Canadian boarder. You enter above with a great view of the town that was below right on the lake. Don’t be mistaken that is a lake. We parked in a lot that’s right next to the lifeguard house. And walked up, our first stop was “World’s Best Doughnuts” we were going to see if they were the ‘best’. It was a 15 minute line, there is a second window but you don’t get to go inside to see the donuts and I wanted to see them. They are under 2 dollars, have a variety of flavours. But are they the world’s best? I went for Chet’s Best which was plane one with chocolate and sprinkles. It was good the only thing me and my friend both said it was very sugary. There was a chunk of frosting on it, they said “like eating cake”.
We headed onto the shore and did some walking on some rocks. It was almost like the Irish shore in Gtown, but I new I wasn’t because Pine trees. Grand Maria is a cute little town, I liked if for it wasn’t commercialises, sorry no Starbucks. There is this cute little library next to the doughnut shop. If you are going to head this way definitely stop in Grand Maria, you’ll see a lot that you really don’t expect to see.
We headed back south out of Grand Maria, we weren’t going to Canada, and began our journey to the state parks. We got a weekend pass at Temperance State Park, our first stop, it cost 14 dollars. The ranger in there was very helpful when we told her were we were heading. She told us the best way to get there (exactly what google said) and what we needed to see. And were to park. At Temperance was a quick little bridge walk above this small little off high way water fall. A walk down and a climb onto rocks we ended up on this small little tiny rock beach ( i wouldn’t call it sand) were we again climbed some rocks then headed back up, across 61 to the other side were we adventure under the bridge to get a little closer and cooler view of the water. DON”T GET CLOSE! We moved on for a half hour drive, most on a dirt road to George Crosby Manitou State Park. Where we walked around the lake, we weren’t close to the lake, but it was a nice cool walk in the woods. Our next and longest stop was at Tettegouche State Park. We were so glad we ended here first, cause there was a lot more to see, a lot more to walk, and we wanted to spend our time here.
Once we got to the top, we decided to go to the lower falls which was about 10 minutes walk over and 5 minutes down A LOT of stairs. That you will have to walk up eventually. We went over to the rocks and sat in front of the water looking straight at the waterfall. Taking the shoes off and dipping our feet in. We sat for awhile, not wanting take on those 150 stairs. But when we did, we adventured to the other one, across the shacky bridge, down some more stairs (going to walk back up these) to the shore and this large water fall–its not big but it’s pretty big. I quickly took of my pants-my swim suit was
underneath and went in. I was so hot. I also always wanted to swim near a waterfall-the water is not deep enough to swim I basically skinned my knees and was ankle deep. We were so happy to end there and headed back to figure out food. Since there was no place around the hotel, we weren’t camping, I had the restrictions and seemed everything closed at 7. But the one place that didn’t was in Two Harbors, a small town, half hour away. Which wasn’t bad and got us onto another evening adventure. To some boat watching, iron rage exploration and more rocks. There is another beach spot to swim in Lake Superior but how can you beat swimming in a waterfall?
I love climbing rocks!
It was check out day but more adventure a head! Our first stop was the light house, Split Rock. The parks open at 6 am but the lighthouse wasn’t opening until 10. And us not in any hurry ended up there at 9 am! That’s what happens we you don’t set a schedule you really ended up a head of the game. Which really paid of in our favour cause the gates were open, we didn’t have to pay to go to see the lighthouse and ended up walking the 2 mile walk that we took off the path and on the rocks near the shoe, a head of everyone else. Walking the path is free, seeing the light house is going to cost you.
After Split Rock and Pebble beach, which was the end point of the trail, we headed back to the car to head to our final stop; Gooseberry Falls State Park. There was a LOT of people there, which we soon found out was because this was an easy simple spot; also a swimming whole for kids to play on. Me not wanting to be near people, headed to this little top of rock area were you could walk through some stream of water and sit close to the edge. The one thing I had was we were sitting chatting enjoy outselfes, me with my camera and a drown came above us. It’s agents the law to fly them in the state park, but I hated cause its such a public place and there was some stranger videoing me. I’m fine for when your in like the middle of the ocean but not were children are running around. But we continued out, adventuring across the rocks, water, seeing a few more smaller waterfalls, going into the water to get some cool shots–my long hair ends barely touching it. I think this spot is really cool, but there are just too many people everywhere there is no like relaxing, someone is going to get in your shot not the biggest deal but you kind of don’t want a kid in your photograph you know?
After that we headed back south home, stuck in an hour of traffic, which I LOVE (sarcasm) But this weekend was great, I always need a weekend away especially when things get too much. I always would escape to the beach and my secret spot in Gtown. And this was my three hour drive escape. I didn’t really realize I needed this weekend until after, I felt good, I felt like this was the happiness I’ve been needing. And it brought on this new form of confidence and inability to focus come Monday. But Wednesday morning, reality hit again. Don’t you just hate that? But, I know that happiness and confidence is in me!
I do recommend if you ever in Minnesota go up North, there is really nothing like it and you really don’t expect it to be in Minnesota because in the city it is truly city life; then you get back of nowhere to farm land, to nothing again. But up north you get this woods, lake, and beautiful scenery. It had to be the lake for me, cause I finally saw the Horizon end, it’s what I’ve been looking for!
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