Thursday, October 4, 2007

Family Getaway: Superior North Shore

This August, Michele and I took the kiddos up along the North Shore of Lake Superior. The trip was meaningful for several reasons. The first time Michele and I had been to this area was three years ago when we celebrated our 10-yr wedding anniversary (very romantic). Second, Michele and I had a chance to take 6 of our youth camping up in this area last year (a very thrilling, yet challenging spiritual adventure). Lastly, this trip was meaningful because joining us on the trip were Michele's folks, along with her brother and his bride. This area has become very special to us and it was great to share some of the sites with our loved ones.

We camped at Gooseberry Falls State Park. We stayed in the sites nearset the shoreline. They're sheltered enough from severe winds, but you still get the benefit of some air movement along with the relaxing sound of the waves. The State Park is beautiful, featuring several gorgeous waterfalls, a very interesting visitor's center and several incredible Civilian Conservation Corps buildings.

After hiking around Gooseberry, we took in other sites along the North Shore, like SplitRock Lighthouse, Cascade River State Park and the lovely little harbor town of Grand Marais. Another fun place to check out is Palisade Head, a nice scenic overlook area along a 150' high cliff. (There are lots of big cracks in the rock there and I had a little fun freaking out the kiddos by pretending to fall into one - see right). We also spent a morning in Duluth, checking out the novelty shops and watching the huge freighters coming in and going under the lift bridge.

If I only could check out one thing along the North Shore, it would be the Split Rock Lighthouse. The history is fascinating. The setting is stunning. The origincal craftmanship and restoration effort by the Historical Society is remarkable.

It was a special time with the family. We had a ton of fun, even though the weather didn't always cooperate.


  • I was thrilled to see our kiddos enjoy God's creation. They would have been content to roam the shoreline the entire week. They too were mesmorized by the pounding of the waves against the volcanic rock.

  • I found myself wishing we could live closer to a place like this (It's a 8 hour drive). The time was relaxing and just had a powerful sense of rightness to it.

  • Those who the least desire to see a bear are the most likely to see one. My sister-in-law had reservations about camping in an areas where it might even be possible to encounter a mammal larger than a cocker spaniel. She even inquired about the bear situation when the registered for their camping site. Of course they hadn't had a bear in the park for two years. Well, guess who saw one on the way to freshen up?

Websites to check out

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