The Heart of Lake Superiors North Shore
Beaver BayEast Beaver Bay
2 Official Destination Guide of Silver Bay, Minnesota and surrounding areas
Cover: Moon at Perigee. PAUL SUNDBERG
Things to See . . . . . . . . . . . 3Places to Stay or Camp . . . . . 4Other Things to Do . . . . . . . . 6North Shore Mining and Silver Bay. . . . . . . . . . . 7Area Events . . . . . . . . . . 8/9Area Map . . . . . . . . . . 10/11Beaver Bay . . . . . . . . . . . 12East Beaver Bay. . . . . . . . . 12Finland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13Little Marais . . . . . . . . . . . 14Silver Bay Map . . . . . . . . . 19
DirectoryLodging . . . . . . . . . . . . .4/5Churches . . . . . . . . . . . . 14Dining . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15Community Services . . . . . . 17
Beaver BaySilver Bay
Split Rock Lighthouse
Of course, Lake Superior is the reason youre
here. Its sometimes smooth as glass, sometimes
raging in a Noreaster, one-thousand-foot ore
boats, ocean-going freighters, sailboats, cruisers,
and kayaks all have plenty of room to sail. The
shoreline is more accessible in our area than any
other place on the North Shore, with miles of
rugged cliffs and pebble beaches full of agates
Most of our scenic attractions are easily
accessible by car, with a little walking.
Going up the shore, on Highway 61, a
National Scenic Byway and an All American
Road, just 39 miles from Duluth is Gooseberry
Falls State Park. Gooseberry Falls is one of
the most visited state parks and has ample
parking. Within a few minutes walk from
the Visitor Center you can see the falls.
Just minutes up the shore from Gooseberry
Falls is the world-famous Split Rock
Lighthouse, 46 miles from Duluth. You can
tour the Lighthouse and the grounds, led by
knowledgeable guides dressed in period
costumes. Down the hill from the
Lighthouse, park at the Trail Center of Split
Rock State Park with paths along Lake
Superior leading to a vista of the Lighthouse.
Your next stop is Beaver Bay, only 5 miles
from the Lighthouse. Its one of the oldest
communities in Minnesota, founded in
1858, accessible only by water in those days.
Visit the shops and see the Beaver River.
Less than two miles from Beaver Bay is the
Silver Bay Marina and Bayside Park. See the
sailboats and power boats in the harbor. Theres
an excellent view of the Thousand Footers
(ore boats) coming into the Northshore Mining
harbor. Have a picnic at the Bayside Park with
a lakeside view and its cozy beach.
Adjacent to the marina to the northeast is the
Northshore Mining taconite processing plant
built in the mid-fifties. Just beyond that is
Silver Bay, a city built at the same time. See
page 9 for more description of the Plant and
Silver Bay. Turn left at the stoplight on Outer
Drive, which is the start of the Superior
National Forest Scenic Byway. Cruise the
streets of the city to see what planners thought
the city of the future would look like. The
Byway continues up the hill and eventually
reaches Hoyt Lakes on the Iron Range.
Back on Highway 61, your next stop is
Palisade Head, a 260-foot cliff just two-and-
a-half miles from Silver Bay. Park at the top
of the cliff and see panoramic views of the
shore. Less than 2 miles from Palisade Head
is Tettegouche State Park. Take the half-mile
trail to Shovel Point, another magnificent
cliff, or take the trail upstream on the
Baptism River to see several waterfalls.
Just beyond that, scenic Highway 1 intersects
Highway 61. Six miles up Highway 1 is
Finland, a community founded by Finnish
settlers in 1895. Highway 1 eventually
reaches Ely, the hub of the Boundary Waters
Canoe Area. County 6, on the north side of
Finland, heads east and eventually connects
with Highway 61 at Little Marais (Mile Post
65). On the way, you can see the John Pine
Heritage Site, a village that recalls the past,
and Wolf Ridge, a well-respected
Little Marais is the end of the Silver Bay
area. Highway 61 continues to be very
scenic. Lutsen, a downhill ski area; Grand
Marais, known as an art community; and
the Canadian border all await you.
Things to See
LODGINGSilver BayAmericInn150 Mensing DriveSilver Bay, MN 55614218-226-4300
Fenstads Resort6572 Hwy. 61ELittle Marais, MN 55614218-226-4724
Little Marais Lakeside Cabins6476 Hwy. 61Little Marais, MN 55614218-226-3456
Inn at Palisade on Superior5616 Hwy. 61Silver Bay, MN 55614218-226-0200
Mariner Motel46 Outer DriveSilver Bay, MN 55614218-226-4488
Split Rock Cabins3668 Hwy. 61ETwo Harbors, MN 55616218-226-4735
Tettegouche State Park Camping5702 Hwy. 61ESilver Bay, MN 55614218-226-6365
Whispering Pines Motel5763 Hwy. 61ESilver Bay, MN 55614218-226-4712
Beaver BayCamp 611017 Main StreetBeaver Bay, MN 55601218-226-4351
Cove Point Lodge4614 Hwy. 61EBeaver Bay, MN 55601218-226-3221
Northland Trails GuesthouseMain Street/Hwy. 61EBeaver Bay, MN 55601218-226-4199
Split Rock State Park3755 Split Rock Lighthouse Rd.Two Harbors, MN 55616218-226-6377
Places to Stay or CampThe Silver Bay Area offers a surprising
variety of places to stay. All have websites.
Just type in the name on your browser.
If you want to be civilized, there are many
places to stay. As you approach Beaver Bay from
the southwest, Cove Point Lodge is on the
lakeside. In the City of Beaver Bay, Camp 61 is
on the landside. In the City of Silver Bay, the
Mariner Motel is just off Highway 61. Just a
mile down #61, The AmericInn has 60 rooms,
wading pool, sauna, full-size swimming pool, and
a water slide. They also offer a free breakfast and
have an attractive lobby. Four miles from Silver
Bay, the Whispering Pines Motel (landside) and
Inn at Palisade (lakeside) await you. A few miles
up the shore in Little Marais, Superior Lakeside
Cabins has old-fashioned cabins with a great
view of Lake Superior. On the scenic Highway 1,
northeast on Highway 61 from Tettegouche
State park, the beautiful Baptism River Inn Bed
and Breakfast is on the Baptism River. They love
to accommodate hikers, leaf peepers, cross
country skiers, and romantics. The National
Forest Lodge, run by the owners of the Baptism
River Inn Bed and Breakfast, is 7 miles beyond
Isabella on Highway 1. They have direct access
to Flathorn/Gekoka Ski Trails, a well known
place to cross country ski.
If you want more rustic places to stay,
Gooseberry Falls, Split Rock, Tettegouche, and
George H. Crosby Manitou State Parks have
campgrounds with various tent sites ranging
from car parking at the site to cart in sites.
The City of Silver Bay has several free sites for
Recreation Vehicles at the Observation Park.
Go to silverbay.com. Eckbeck Campground
on the Baptism River on Highway 1, 3
miles from Highway 61, has very-low-cost
campsites for tents and small RVs. Finland
State Forest Campground on County 6, just
off Highway 1 at Finland, offers the same
opportunities. Wildhurst, 4 miles north of
Finland on Highway 1, is on the snowmobile
and ATV trails. They have RV hookups.
If backpacking camping is your thing,
The Superior Hiking Trail is acclaimed
throughout the nation, and has many
campsites from Gooseberry Falls to the Little
Marais Road. Some of the campsites have
panoramic vistas, some are more intimate.
The Superior Hiking Trail can be accessed
approximately every 5 miles from roads on
Highway 61, and there are plenty of parking
lots for the trail in the Silver Bay Area.
4 Official Destination Guide of Silver Bay, Minnesota and surrounding areas
Baptism River Inn B&B6125 Hwy. 1
Finland, MN 55603218-353-0707
Bettys Cabins6077 Hwy. 1
Silver Bay, MN 55614218-353-7362
Crooked Lake Resort9449 Cramer RoadFinland, MN 55603
Eckbeck CampgroundHighway 1/Baptism River
Finland, MN 55603218-226-6365
Finland CampgroundCounty Rd. 6 & Hwy. 1
Finland, MN 55603218-226-6365
Lax Lake Resort5736 Lax Lake Rd.Finland, MN 55603
Maple Grove Motel6527 Hwy. 1
Finland, MN 55603218-353-7303
National Forest Lodge9905 National Forest
Lodge RoadIsabella, MN 55607
Riverside Motel7143 Hwy. 1
Finland, MN 55603218-353-7539
Wildhurst Campground7344 Hwy. 1
Finland, MN 55603218-353-7337
Sea kayaking is fantastic along the North Shore.
The Minnesota DNR has developed a kayak
water trail with many campsites along the shore.
One of them is Black Beach, just below Silver
Bay. Another one is just a few miles from Black
Beach, one mile northeast of Palisade Head.
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area is world
famous for canoe trips. Access to the BWCA
is provided at several points just over an
hour from the Silver Bay area.
Pamper yourself at one of our lodges, car
camp at one of our four State Parks, or
camp on the Superior Hiking Trail or the
Kayak Water Trail. We have it all.
Summer CampsFamily Programs
K-12 SchoolsWilderness TripsSea Kayak Tours
Finland, MN 800-523-2733www.wolf-ridge.org
6 Official Destination Guide of Silver Bay, Minnesota and surrounding areas
The Silver Bay area is truly the center of all
the trails along the North Shore.
We have one hundred miles of local
snowmobile and ATV trails within a few
miles of Silver Bay. Look at the ATV/
Snowmobile Map on pages 10-11. The trails
connect to the State Trail, which extends
from Duluth to Grand Marais, and plans to
modify the State Trail to accommodate
ATVs are just ahead. The Penn Avenue
parking lot in Silver Bay is paved and you
can offload your sleds or wheelers there.
The longest segment of the Gitchi Gami
Trail, 14 miles, extends from Beaver Bay to
Gooseberry Falls State Park. The trail is
paved and ideal for biking, inline skating,
or walking. Theres a big parking lot in
Beaver Bay, soon to be paved. You can take
the bikes off your vehicle and immediately
The Superior Hiking Trail is one of the
most famous trails in the United States. It
extends from Jay Cooke Park south of Duluth
to the border of Canada. You can hike from
the Penn Avenue lot to Bean and Bear Lakes,
one of the most scenic parts of the trail.
The Water Trail for kayaks also extends
from the St. Louis River, south of Duluth to
Pigeon River, the border river between the
U.S. and Canada. There are several camps
along the shoreline, including at Black
Beach, just below Silver Bay.
Were also in the center of fishing and
hunting. From Lake Superior, where lake
trout and salmon are caught, to the streams,
where various kinds of trout live and salmon
spawn, to the inland lakes, where the usual
suspects--walleyes, bass, trout, panfish,
northerns, and muskies--await your skill. We
have abundant deer, and hunting seasons for
bear, grouse, and moose. You will see a lot
of people filling out their tags.
Twenty-six warblers nest on the North
Shore. We have raptors, owls, gulls, and
many other kinds of birds in our area.
Peregrine falcons nest on Palisade Head, just
3 miles from Silver Bay, and many other
places. Our area is a birding hot spot.
If you fly, we have a municipal airport 11 miles
from Silver Bay with a 3,200 hard surface runway.
For the golfer, we have a beautiful 9 hole golf
course just 2 miles from Silver Bay, set in the
East Branch of the Beaver River valley.
Northshore Mining offers tours in the
summer that start at the Bay Area Historical
Society on Outer Drive in Silver Bay. The
Historical Society is also worth a visit. They
record the construction of the town and the
Other Things to Do
What is the big plant just before Silver Bay,
and why does Silver Bay exist?
In the 1940s E. W. Davis, a professor from
the University of Minnesota, perfected a way
to extract iron from taconite, which is only
25% iron. Four steel companies, including
Republic and Armco, were convinced that
the process was worthwhile, but there was a
small problem. They didnt have a place for
thousands of workers, a mine, a railroad, or
a port to ship the 93% pure iron pellets to
Cleveland, where the steel plants were. In
the mid 50s, Reserve Mining Company,
owned by the parent companies Armco and
Republic, built the city of Babbitt on
Mesabi Iron Range, and the city of Silver
Bay, including its schools and shopping
center, on the shores of Lake Superior. The
first family moved to the new town in 1952.
Reserve Mining Company also developed
the mine near Babbitt, built a 47 mile
railroad, and constructed the plant and
Silver Bay is one of the newest cities in
Minnesota, and its 3 miles from one of the
oldest cities in Minnesota, Beaver Bay.
Then, in the mid 60s, controversy
about the tailings (the waste rock),
which was deposited in Lake Superior,
hit the communities of Babbitt and Silver
Bay. After many years, the plant was closed
in 1986 and the two cities went into
decline. After lengthy negotiations,
everyone agreed to build an on land
place to keep the tailingsMilepost Seven
of the railroad. In the early 90s, the Plant
started operation and the cities revived.
Now all the houses and buildings are
Since 1994, the Plant has been owned by
Cliffs Natural Resources and is called
Northshore Mining. In 2011 they were
producing 93% pure iron pellets at a
record pace. They shipped 5,372,557 tons
The Silver Bay Marina is an excellent place
to see the Ore Boats coming into the
Northshore Mining Harbor. Plant tours are
offered in the summer. Call 218.226.3143
Today, Silver Bay has everything for
the visitor. Northwoods Caf and
Jimmys Pizza, Zups and Bri-Esas deli
can feed you. The Shopping Center
accessed from Outer Drive (the turn
from the stoplight) also has Zups, a grocery
store, and Julies, a hardware store, and
several other businesses. Blazers can fix
your vehicle, and Adams Automotive has
the parts. Both businesses are near the
Northshore Mining and Silver Bay
8 Official Destination Guide of Silver Bay, Minnesota and surrounding areas
We have more than 30 major events
throughout the year.
JanuaryThe John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon is
held during the last week of January and ends
in early February. In 2012, we didnt have
enough snow so the race was cancelled, but
hopefully well have plenty of snow next year.
Beaver Bay and Finland are major stops for
the sleds. Go to beargrease.com for details.
FebruaryArrowhead Vintage Rendezvous Snowmobile
Run is held on the third Saturday. Their
headquarters is in Finland, a few miles up
Highway #1. Check out finlandmnus.com.
Sugar on Snow occurs on the last Friday-
Saturday. This increasingly popular event
features artisans that still do the jobs that