MN North Shore – Autumn Journey – Day 2

Day 2 began exquisitely.  We made our way down to waters edge in Grand Marais for a sunrise shoot.  Nature cooperated nicely.  From there, we back-tracked a bit to Cascade River State Park for a beautiful morning hike up the river gorge among the picturesque cascades.  Next we got off the beaten path (Hwy 61) and made our way towards another destination (Hollow Rock Resort).  After checking in we were off on the Gunflint Trail  to drive a loop through the forest in search of Devilfish overlook.    We got closed, but missed a road and stumbled on a Red Fox – cute little bugger; then just continued on our way.  We decided to take another run at a sunset at Honey Moon Bluff that overlooks Hungry Jack Lake off the Gunflint Trail.  The second attempt yielded better results than the first.

Another full day on the MN North Shore.  Love this place.  There is a surprise around every corner.

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Minnesota North Shore – The In-Between, Day 2

Day2The second day started much like how the first ended – heavy think fog blanketing our surroundings.  The fog certainly added an extra element to the photos though.  After a bit of breakfast at the lodge we made our way out to the fish house and then out to the point.  The hike was great – especially in the fog.

After leaving Cove Point Lodge we went back South to visit Split Rock Lighthouse State Park.  It was too late the previous afternoon to Split Rock Lighthouse.  We spent a great foggy morning there before heading back North and stopping at Palisade Head.  There essentially was no view at Palisade Head, other than a ship heading for shore in some very dense fog.  Tettegouche State Park was the next stop.  We ended up skipping Gerorge Crosby Manitou State Park.  The entrance isn’t right off of Hwy 61 and we just plain missed the turn.  We continued on our way and visited Temperance River State Park as well as Cascade River State Park before arriving in Grand Marais.  We secured a room for the night at The Shoreline Inn and made our way to My Sister’s Place for a much anticipated evening meal.  Traveling & photography are hungry business.

Here are my shots of the Minnesota North Shore – The in between, Day 2

Minnesota North Shore – Cascade River State Park

Cascade River is the sixth park you will encounter while traveling the North Shore.  This park doesn’t have much of a presence right off the road; there is a wayside that looks out over Lake Superior, but the best parts are along the easy hiking trails opposite the lake.  These cascades are spectacular.  The River cascades over one ledge after another as it drops 900 feet in the last three miles as it makes its way to Lake Superior.  The volcanic canyon is home to many fragrant cedar trees and we even stumbled upon some lady slippers in bloom.  The 18 miles of hiking trails loop up around Lookout and Mouse mountains as well as parallel Lake Superior right along the beach (1.5 miles) where you will find seven picnic sites.  This park offers a variety of camping options which include several semi-modern drive-up, two group camps and five back pack-in sites.

I think this was by far our favorite park of the trip.  The cascades are just so beautiful as our you complete surroundings.  I definitely would like to make plans to return here in the Fall for the leaf color.  From Temperance River on up is my favorite stretch of the North Shore.  I stumbled upon the Trifecta:  Three Parks.  Three Trails.  Three Days.  This would be absolutely fantastic to do – especially along this stretch of the North Shore.

History

Years ago, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) had a camp at the Cascade River. The men in this camp worked on a variety of conservation projects. Today, you can see some of their handiwork on the trails that wind along the river. One enrollee told how they cut and moved the large pine logs from Cascade down to Gooseberry Falls State Park to finish buildings in that park. From the beginning, Cascade was thought of as a state park, but it wasn’t until 1957 that it was officially designated as such.

Here are my shots from my recent visit to Cascade River State Park.

The State Parks:  (1) Gooseberry Falls |(2) Split Rock Lighthouse | (3) Tettegouche | (5) Temperance River | (6) Cascade River | (7) Judge C.R. Magney | (8) Grand Portage