Our Stay at Gunflint Lodge
We are huge proponents of Minnesota. We both grew up here, had our first home together here, and still spend almost every Christmas going back here despite the mild winter chill (LOL). When people around the world find out where we’re from, they often reply in a few ways:
I love the show ‘Fargo!’ (Apparently MN has inherited this North Dakota city)
There are a lot of lakes there, right?
Ahhh, yes, the lakes. Personally, we are happiest when we are near water. That’s why when we ventured back to the midwest to surprise our families this summer, we knew we needed to squeeze in some quality lake time. A few years ago, we spent a long weekend up north at Gunflint Lodge, and we had been reminiscing about how much fun we had there. So, we took Tristan’s mom and dad and went on a little road trip to our favorite place in Northern Minnesota.
Even though you’ve got access to some pretty remote wilderness, there are so many different activities to keep you busy at the lodge. Here are just a few things we got into:
Towering Pines Canopy Tour
We LOVE zip lining, so when we heard you could have your own eagle-eye view of the forest from above, we just had to do it. There were 8 different lines, and the guides we had would point out different types of trees and tell us about the history of the area. It was so much fun!
Gunflint Lodge has their own stable right on the property, so after breakfast one day (the Lodge has a restaurant that serves every meal, so luckily we didn’t even have to leave to get some tasty food!), we walked over and got saddled up for a ride. Our wranglers brought us on a fun jaunt around the grassy trails—which turn into cross-country skiing trails in the winter—so we could explore the woods from a new perspective.
Boundary Waters Canoe Trip
This was the highlight of our trip. The BWCA access is so close to Gunflint Lodge and, because they are also outfitters, everything you need is right there. We opted for an evening paddle and a campfire dinner under the big open sky, which turned out to be a perfectly still and cloudless night. Out of all the places we’ve been in the world, we remember this night as having the best and brightest stars.
Go for a Boat Ride
Because the Lodge is right on the lake, you can easily rent a boat to go fishing or just cruise around. During our cruise, we stopped at a trailhead and went for a short and easy hike to Bridal Veil Falls. There were so may things blooming along the way and we stopped often to eat wild raspberries and thimbleberries. Mmmm.
One of the best views you can get is from the High Cliffs. You can either drive or hike, and once up there, you can see across the lake to Canada, as well as miles in every direction. We did this as soon as we arrived, and it helped us get oriented with the wilderness that surrounded us.
There is a full time naturalist staffed at Gunflint Lodge, and he definitely knows his way around the North Shore. Everyday, there is a posted list of activities going on through the day that you can sign up for — things like birdwatching hikes, sunset boat rides, ghost stories, Northern Lights spotting, craft projects, and so. much. more.
We only had three days at Gunflint Lodge, so we kept ourselves super busy but still didn’t have a chance to do all the things we wanted to. In the winter, they also have activities like dogsledding, snowmobiling, and cross country skiing, so will just have to come back to check those out, too.