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National Scenic Byways

National Scenic Byways

Cook County, Minnesota has two National Scenic Byways–roads recognized nationally for their scenery and significance. They are the Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway and the North Shore Scenic Drive (an All-American Road).

When we say “Getting here is half the fun,” we mean it.

Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway
The Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway is a two-lane paved road. It meanders from the north shore of Lake Superior through 57 miles of beautiful boreal forest and glacier-dug lakes to the banks of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness/BWCAW at Saganaga Lake.

The Trail and surrounding area have a rich history that includes fur trading (this is voyageur country), Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps, and colorful pioneers.

The Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway is famous for moose sightings and for birding. In fact, the entire Superior National Forest is designated as a Globally Important Birding Area by the American Birding Conservancy.

The Laurentian Divide—the continental divide for water flowage—crosses the Trail. You can hike over some of the oldest exposed rock on Earth.

LINKS
Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway Corridor Management Plan
Gunflint Trail National Scenic Byway Vegetation Management Plan

Scenic Byways in MNMaps and Map Key

Scenic byways podcasts by Michael Monroe

North Shore Scenic Drive, an All-American Road

Were he recording it today, Dylan could title his album “North Shore Scenic Drive Revisited.”

The 154-mile North Shore Scenic Drive, an All-American Road, begins in Duluth and ends at the Canadian border, following Highway 61 and the rugged north shore of Lake Superior. “All-American Road” is the highest designation of a roadway by the National Scenic Byway program.

All of Cook County, Minnesota’s North Shore communities are located along the North Shore Scenic Byway: Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais and Grand Portage.

The 57-mile Gunflint Trail (itself a National Scenic Byway) begins in Grand Marais.

For more information, visit the National Scenic Byway website’s North Shore Scenic Drive section.