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Scenic Drives

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Lowell Indiana
posts: 66
reviews: 11
Scenic Drives

We will be coming up the last week of September and first week

of October are all the roads open for driving on the scenic roads?

Also is Gooseberrly Falls open? We are coming for the fall colors.

Heard 61 was closed in spots, is this true? Any and all help would

be appreciated. Thank You for any help.

Destination Expert
for Minneapolis
posts: 3,069
reviews: 19
1. Re: Scenic Drives

There may be some lane closures that's all.

All should be open.

Saint Paul...
posts: 570
reviews: 4
2. Re: Scenic Drives

Make sure you take Old Hwy 61 between Duluth & Two Harbors. It's a beautiful drive and the turns onto it are well marked off New Hwy. 61.

Edited: 12:13 pm, September 01, 2012
Davie, Florida
posts: 11,185
reviews: 2
3. Re: Scenic Drives

isnt gooseberry falls turned off by then?

posts: 3,805
reviews: 509
4. Re: Scenic Drives

We recently drove to Grand Marais on a Thursday afternoon and there were no traffic backups near Hinckley where I-35 goes down to one lane. We drove back on Sunday afternoon and there was a huge traffic jam going south. I-35 is one lane for about 15 miles starting at Hinckley and going north. I did not see any road closures on 61.

posts: 374
reviews: 5
5. Re: Scenic Drives

Highway 61 is fine. You do want to avoid 35E going north on a Friday afternoon, and, as stated, going south Sunday afternoon. Gooseberry will be flowing, but, by then, the volume is really dependent on recent rains. Make sure you go off of Highway 61 on roads like Highway 1, Sawbill Trail, and the Gunflint Trail to see the color. Many years at that time the shore itself is sort of bland, but a mile up the ridge there can be great color. Always recommend the Oberg Mountain Hike for the ultimate fall color hike. Take Onion River Road several miles east of Tofte.

Lowell Indiana
posts: 66
reviews: 11
6. Re: Scenic Drives

Thank You so much for the information, my husband cannot walk for long hikes so we do mostly driving and short hikes. Any other info would be appreciated. Will be sure to do Gunflint Trail and I will look up the Onion River Road. Thanks for taking the time to answer.

posts: 703
reviews: 8
7. Re: Scenic Drives

Stop at the U.S Forest Service office in Tofte, (or Grand Marais), and pick up a free Color Tour Map of the scenic drives on the Superior National Forest. There are many loop trips as well as one way drives that will put you into some of the best fall colors without getting out of your car. They can also give you info on those short hikes as well, just don't be afraid to ask.

You will be coming at peak time for colors, hope you have a room reserved already.

I just got home today from G.M., roads are fine, no problems at all with 61. Lots of holiday traffic today.

Lowell Indiana
posts: 66
reviews: 11
8. Re: Scenic Drives

Thanks we will be sure to get map, and yes I heard that I should reserve

a room early, so we are staying in Duluth for three days at Comfort Inn canal park and three days in Grand Marais at the Best Western. We still have plenty of time left so looking at other places to go and see Fall colors in Minnesota. We have already been to St, Paul and surrounding area. Thanks Again, we can't wait for trip to begin.

posts: 374
reviews: 5
9. Re: Scenic Drives

If you are staying in Grand Marais, I would also suggest going north all of the way to the border. Grand Portage State Park at the border has a very nice, short hike to High Falls. It's mostly cedar and pine but there also are patches of really nice fall color along the trail and at the falls. 10 miles north of Grand Marais is Naniboujou Lodge which is also worth seeing. The dining room is unusual and spectacular and we always enjoy stopping for coffee and dessert.

Oberg Mountain, while not a hard hike, is definitely a hike but well worth it if you can manage it. About 1/2 mile gradual uphill and then a loop with some up and down. Around 2 miles total.

Sorry, I love the North Shore so I'll make one other recommendation. A couple miles south of Tofte is Sugarloaf Cove Nature Area. Another very short hike to a secluded cove that is very scenic.

Plymouth, Minnesota
posts: 540
reviews: 63
10. Re: Scenic Drives

Palisade Head, in Tettegouche State Park, just north of Silver Bay, on the lake side of the road. Short drive and practically no walk at all for great views of the lake and shore.

I drove past this for years before someone pointed out the error of my ways.