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The Gunflint Trail in Minnesota

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The Gunflint Trail runs through the Superior National Forest between Grand Marais and the Canadian border. This fifty-seven mile drive is one of the most beautiful in Minnesota. 

The Gunflint Trail runs through the Superior National Forest between Grand Marais and the Canadian border. This sixty-three mile drive is one of the most beautiful in this part of Minnesota.

The Gunflint Trail, also known as Highway 12, will take you from Grand Marais, through the Superior National Forest, and all the way to Sagana Lake on the Canadian border.

You might drive for many miles along the Gunflint without seeing other cars. There are, however, many places to stop and to explore along this road.

From here you can canoe into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Outfitters in the areas can prepare you for a BWCAW adventure.

Read what other travelers have to say about the Gunflint

You could take an alternate six-mile trail, the Brule Lake Trail, that you will find to the west on Forest Road 326. You might camp at one of the campsites near the foot of the trail.  

Within this lovely wilderness, you will also find quite a few lodging options. Several of Minnesota's best resorts are here and, as well, camp sites on area lakes. Three of these are: Kimball Lake, East Bearskin Lake, and Flour Lake.

Gunflint Pines Resort and Campground

Cabin in The Woods on Gunflint Lake

Hiking in the Gunflint Trail Area: You can hike the seven mile round trip to to Minnesota's highest point on the Eagle Mountain Trail. The first six miles of the hike is fairly easy however you will challenge yourself to do the last half mile. The view at the end of the trails at the granite summit is worth the effort. 

This is a great year round recreational destination and is particularly attractive for those who enjoy winter sports. Hiking the Gunflint should be on your "must do" list.

The Gunflint winds along fifty-seven miles of paved wilderness to the eastern edge of the Superior National Forest to the edge if the BWCAW and connects to the Superior Hiking Trail

Wildlife abounds in this area. Your chances to see a moose, bear, wolf, eagle and other Minnesota birds are excellent here. 

The Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center on Saganaga Lake is housed in a 1930's stone cabin.

At the end of the trail is the Trail’s End Café. Enjoy the knottty  pine decor and hearty good food including burgers and pizza.

Woman Of The Boundary Waters: Canoeing, Guiding, Mushing, and Surviving is a fascinating story of Justine Kerfoot who pioneered this area.

The Gunflint Trail begins in Grand Marais, immerses you in the Superior National Forest, and guides you through the area bounded on both sides by the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.

Gunflint Trail

The Gunflint is a prime destination for anglers; hundreds of lakes are accessible from the trail.

Fishingis only one reason to spend time on the Gunflint. Some of Minnesota's best resorts are here and attract year-round visitors.

The heavy snowfall in this area attracts cross-country skiers to the groomed trails.

Snowmobiling is also popular here with well-groomed trails that let you ride from Grand Marais to the Canadian border.

Dog-sledding trips can be arranged including extended trips into the wilderness.

The Gunflint can be traveled in winter. Be aware of weather conditions and on the lookout for moose on the road!

This is an area rich in history and story. 

Stories of Life on The Gunflint Trail by those who have lived there.

Gunflint Trail Guest Articles

Sue Kerfoot of the Gunflint Lodge has contributed several articles that detail the history, attractions, and joy of the Gunflint Trail: 

Gunflint Trail Fishing

Gunflint Trail Hiking

Gunflint Trail History

Gunflint Trail Chick-Wauk Museum

The Gunflint Lodge has been run by the Kerfoot family since 1927.
Gunflint Trail Lakes in Minnesota

The resort features 25 Cabins on Gunflint Lake. Amenitities include cabins with fireplaces; some cabins with whirlpool tubs, and some with private saunas

The Gunflint Lodge Motto: “Arrive as A Guest; Leave as A Friend” 

The onsite restaurant is known for their excellent food.

Activities include horseback riding, boats and canoes available to rent, cross-country skiing right from your cabin door and an on staff naturalist. Pets are allowed.

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