Grand Marais

The amazing Mount Josephine trail
September 3, 2016 by Andrew Slade

The amazing Mount Josephine trail

I’ve been revisiting some of my favorite trails in order to update trail information in my guidebook. Here’s a sneak preview of one of the most dramatic trail views on the North Shore. … read more


Get your summer festival on
July 8, 2014 by Andrew Slade

Get your summer festival on

Freshly popped kettle corn, a new handmade piece of art, a cold lemonade—it's time for summer festivals. Find a complete list of 2014 Best North Shore festivals here … read more


Black Friday, Grand Marais-style
November 22, 2012 by Andrew Slade

Black Friday, Grand Marais-style

Grand Marais Christmas Parade. Photo Stephen Hoglund, Cook County Visitor Bureau Thanks to the blogger Mikel from Caribou Highlands known online as "Voice of the Mountains" for the top five list of reasons to "Shore it up" for Thanksgiving. My favorite is reason #3, "No Black Friday". As the writer puts it, "There’s plenty of other chances to get trampled at a shopping mall."I covered last year's Grand Marais Black Friday in a post here. Basically, it's another busy day in Grand Marais. No doorbusters. No five a.m. openings. The narrow aisles in Joynes are as crowded as ever, with stacks … read more


North Shore Fourth of July
July 3, 2012 by Andrew Slade

North Shore Fourth of July

It's hard to believe that it's already the Fourth of July. Since Independence Day falls on a Wednesday this year, the North Shore won't be quite as frantic with travelers making a long weekend out of the holiday. That means a great opportunity for North Shore fans to enjoy some great Fourth of July traditions.It's going to be a lovely day, with breezes off Lake Superior keeping temps in the 70s despite the statewide heat advisory.  Tofte Wilderness Trek  Start your day off right with a 10 kilometer run (or walk) through the woods and ridges near Tofte. Just show … read more


A North Shore Black Friday
November 26, 2011 by Andrew Slade

A North Shore Black Friday

Canadians rushing down Highway 61 to Duluth on our Thanksgiving because their Thanksgiving was last month.Lines snaking past the kitschy keychains and into the Rubbermaid aisle at Joynes' Ben Franklin. And a black-and-white poodle getting all the love on a day known just for the black.Today was Black Friday, and the North Shore nearly missed it. No doorbusters at the Lake Superior Trading Post in Grand Marais. No controversial midnight openings at Waters Edge in Tofte. Just 20% off all clothing and footwear at Grand Marais' landmark five and dime, Joynes.All the super good deals must have been in Duluth and … read more


A super solstice weekend in Grand Marais
June 16, 2011 by Andrew Slade

A super solstice weekend in Grand Marais

Grand Marais is the place to be this weekend. Northern evenings are long and the nights are short. Duluth and Two Harbors will be packed with marathon runners, so head farther up the shore for a classic North Shore experience with elbow room This weekend is the 14th Annual Wooden Boat Show at North House Folk School. The show celebrates the romance and history of wooden boats. From noon on Friday to 3:00 pm on Sunday, a fleet of wooden kayaks, canoes, scows, and more will be on display at the Folk School campus. There's a Community of Crafters, a contra … read more


Winter is still here, with more on the way
March 21, 2011 by Andrew Slade

Winter is still here, with more on the way

There is plenty of snow up in the North Shore ridges. With a blizzard watch for tomorrow and a stretch of cold days coming after that, it looks like we've got a bonus week of real winter still ahead. I love these snowdepth maps from the climatologists at the Minnesota DNR. Check out that raindrop-shaped smear of mauve along the North Shore. That's snow over two feet deep.  Even if the forecasts for a big snow don't pan out, here are some great ski trails right in that mauve smear: Flathorn-Gegoka, IsabellaNorthwoods Ski Touring Trail, Silver Bay Sugarbush Trail, Tofte-Lutsen Bally Creek Trails, … read more


Holiday shopping, North Shore style
December 3, 2010 by Andrew Slade

Holiday shopping, North Shore style

If you're up the North Shore this weekend, take some time for unique holiday shopping. Craft fairs will tempt you with local artists and local art this Saturday. In the Grand Marais area, you could spend the whole day visiting artists in their homes and studios.  In Duluth, check out the Get it Local gift fair at the Peace Church in the East Hillside neighborhood, at 1111 N. 11th Ave. E. There will be over 25 local artists.  The fair will be open from 10am-3pm The organizer says, “From wreaths to jewelry to home decor to dog treats you will find … read more


Best North Shore holiday gift guide
November 30, 2010 by Andrew Slade

Best North Shore holiday gift guide

How can you share your love of the North Shore with the friends and family on your gift list? Here are ideas for gifts that will make your loved ones' Christmas morning feel like finding the perfect agate or the biggest blueberry patch. This year, buy local...buy on the North Shore. 1. Wood engravings, lino cuts, and giclee prints, oh my!One-of-a-kind notecards, groovy t-shirts, whimsical prints, and northwoods novelties come from our friends at Kenspeckle Letterpress. Rick and Marian produce their magical art in Duluth's Canal Park. 2. The sweet stuffWho doesn't love real maple syrup on their pancakes? The North Shore … read more


"I think they’re having more fun here."
August 5, 2010 by Andrew Slade

"I think they’re having more fun here."

Beth Gauper, in the most recent of her always-informative Midwest Weekends e-mail newsletter, wrote that "Grand Marais is our No. 1 place to take children in Minnesota." She cites the rock-skipping and the donut shops, to start with.I really love the quote from some teachers visiting from Australia: “We’ve been to the Mall of America and Disney World, places where (the kids are) excited to be, of course, but realistically, I think they’re having more fun here.’’ … read more