North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend

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North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend

After a very busy winter season of work and other great stuff, Anne and I decided it was finally time to get away for a North Shore Lake Superior winter weekend.  But where should we go for the perfect time of both fun and rest?  Hopefully, this article with help you decide what to do on your next little getaway excursion.

North Shore Accommodations – Cove Point Lodge

We had to get Cove Point Lodge North of Duluth had come highly recommended to us for its location, accommodations and great staff. A few years ago we had taken a day hike on the Superior Hiking Trail that started in the parking lot of Cove Point Lodge. That trail is called, you guessed it, Cove Point Lodge Loop – Superior Hiking Trail *. We have such great memories of that hike, that now we had even another reason to stay there.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Cove Point Lodge

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Cove Point Lodge

We were looking for a nicer room with all the amenities. You know, fireplace, jacuzzi, etc. We wanted to have the ability to just disappear and live a hermit life for a few days if we wanted to. We found a room available that was perfect for what we were looking for, so, we booked a room for a few nights and eagerly looked forward to some time to recuperate.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Cove Point Lodge

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Cove Point Lodge – Like a Sky Chalet

This, like all trips to beautiful locations, is not only a rest trip but it is also a photography trip. When I am on trips like this I generally build a list of places I want to explore, trails I want to hike and locations that I want to photograph. And like any good photographer, I also watched weather conditions and checked  the times for sunrise and sunset. With all this information collected, we were set.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Cove Point LodgeNorth Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Cove Point Lodge – Charming Dining

We checked into the lodged and were pleasantly surprised by the whole look and feel of the place. It has a somewhat rustic feel to it, with a log cabin or ski chalet motif, including a huge fireplace with a roaring fire burning at most times of the day.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Cove Point Lodge

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Cove Point Lodge – The Boat House View

 

Cove Point is on Lake Superior, so if there are any waves at all, you get to hear the relaxing sound of waves crashing on the rocks all hours of the day and night. What that means is that any time is the perfect time for a nap at Cove Point Lodge. I, of course, took advantage of a few opportunities to nap.

 

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Cove Point Lodge

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Cove Point Lodge

Hikes and Adventures

Palisade Head

One of the locations that was on my list to see and to photograph was Palisade Head. Palisade Head is a large rock formation on the North Shore of Lake Superior. It reminds me of the rocky cliffs of Ireland and is a very scenic view. The location is within Tettegouche State Park but not contiguous with the rest of that park. You can find it just a few miles north of Cove Point along the lovely Highway 61. I had seen pictures of it and I knew it had to be on my list as a “must capture image”.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Palisade Head

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Palisade Head

I was surprised how rugged this little park was. It has a very small hidden little parking lot without much of a hint of what is available here.

It was a gorgeous day for a hike but the trail was very icy. Luckily we had our Ice Grippers/Cleats for our boots. We would have died had we not had them, but instead, we were safe and secure.

The hike is not too long and not too difficult so in about 15 minutes we were starting to get some hints of what we were going to be seeing. The trails were not well marked or anything so just keep hiking along the trail until you get to a fantastic view. There is a viewpoint that will let you know for sure you are at the right place.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Palisade Head

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Palisade Head

Wow, just wow, the view is spectacular! I got the feeling that I was no longer in Minnesota. You just do not see views like this every day in Minnesota.

Baptism River High Falls in  Tettegouche State Park

We had hiked Baptism River trail in Tettegouche State Park before, but never in the winter. We wanted to see these falls pretty early in the morning to tray to capture some interesting light.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Baptism River High Falls in Tettegouche State Park

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Baptism River High Falls in Tettegouche State Park

We got out one day for a hike out to Baptism Falls in Tettegouche State Park. The falls were running pretty fast and furiously for being in the middle of the winter! The day was a glorious day of about 32 degrees and it made for a perfect two-mile hike! There is almost nothing better than getting out into the creation and enjoying the glorious beauty.

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend - Baptism River High Falls in Tettegouche State Park

North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend – Baptism River High Falls in Tettegouche State Park

North Shore Food

The food at Cove Point Lodge was quite good but we wanted to get out and about a little bit and explore what else there was to experience.

Northern Lights Cafe

After a hike one afternoon we were up around Beaver Bay and performed a quick google search for food. We were famished. We found Northern Lights Cafe. It was a delight of Scandinavian cuisine and treats that tantalized the taste buds. We got there about closing time but the service staff happily stayed open to provide us a great meal. Of course, we had to finish the meal with one of the amazing desserts. We would give this place a high 4 or low 5-star review, they were that good.

Some Really Bad Food

One evening we headed south from Cove Point Lodge looking for food. There was an unnamed resort that has a restaurant that looked interesting. We decided to go in. We noticed there were no people there but that did not slow us down. (Reader beware, you probably should not eat at an empty restaurant). We wanted to have a nice dinner, so we ordered wine, salad, appetizers, filet mignon and/or fish, veggies the whole shebang.

The service was slow and unprofessional, the food was way too salty and unappetizing, the filet mignon was like shoe leather. Yikes.  They comped our meal and we left. sheesh, close that baby down!

Really Great Food – Rustic Inn Cafe – Castle Danger, Minnesota

After that shock to the system, we had to find something to calm our nerves. We were looking for some normal comfort food. The Rustic Inn and Cafe was close by. With a quick check of reviews, we were pretty sure we had a winner. The name of this place itself has a great ring to it. And they serve the great Castle Danger Beer.

Can you possibly get two different experiences? They have a wonderfully friendly ambiance, professional, quick, friendly service, and everything we ordered was amazing. Of course, we had to finish off with some amazing pie. No, we could not just share one piece; we each had to order different selections so that we would share and our culinary experiences would be expanded. Wow were they good! The competition is settled, Rustic Inn Cafe has the best pies in Minnesota!

Conclusion

So, alas, our short excursion was over. We were indeed reinvigorated and relaxed. We had some new experiences, tasted new great (and terrible) food, and hiked some new trails. I wish every weekend was just like this.

I would certainly encourage you to book some time at Cove Point Lodge. There is so much to see and so much to do here for the adventurer you will be so glad you did. And until next time, get out and capture the adventure.

You will be able to find these and other great prints here: http://wayne-moran.pixels.com/

Notes:

* Check out the map for Superior Hiking Trail: Cove Point Lodge Loop here:

These images and much more are available for purchase.

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North Shore Lake Superior Winter Weekend

Written by Wayne Moran - Visit Website
wayne@LetThereBeLightFineArt.com