DescriptionLocated in northeastern Minnesota, Superior National Forest's more than 3 million acres abound with lakes, rivers and streams. The 1 million-acre Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) stretches along the international boundary opposite Ontario's Quetico Provincial Park. Most of the forest outside of this wilderness area is accessible by automobile. Major routes include SR 61 from Grand Marais, along the Gunflint Trail; SR 169 from Ely; and off US 53 at Crane Lake. Many other forest service roads provide access to less-traveled areas. Those who wish to follow paths once navigated by Native American hunters and French-Canadian voyageurs can explore the innumerable canoe trails that thread through this vast wilderness.
Travel permits are required within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness year-round; a user fee is required for overnight stays from May through September. Permits can be reserved for $16; $8 (ages 0-17); an additional $6 fee applies for reservations made via phone. They can be picked up the day preceding or the day of entry; phone (877) 444-6777 for camping reservations.
The forest is home to a rich variety of wildlife: moose, deer, bears, grouse, gray wolves and the common loon, Minnesota's state bird. Camping is available, and most campgrounds are open from spring through late fall. Boating, fishing, canoeing, hiking, berry picking and bird-watching are popular summer activities; in winter cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice fishing, ice-skating and dog sledding take over.
For additional information contact the Superior National Forest Supervisor's Office, 8901 Grand Avenue Pl., Duluth, MN 55808; phone (218) 626-4300.