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Fall Colors Road Trip to the North Shore – Day 1

We’re off to see the colors, the wonderful colors of fall! Do you have that song stuck in your head now? Good! muwhaha!

The other day, I posted about all the essentials you need for a good road trip. Now, I’m going to give you a destination for your next road trip! The other weekend, some friends and I headed up to the North Shore to take in the fall colors and explore. We a bit early for peak colors but as you’ll see, it was still incredibly beautiful up there! Since you take the same road up there (there is only 1!) that you do on the way back, this could be done in any order.

The first place you will hit on your way up north is Jay Cooke State Park. I had never been there before so this was a must stop! We parked by the visitors center due to the need for a bathroom break. I think it was a great access point to the rest of the park so I would recommend parking there. The park was so amazing with the two waterfalls and the trees just changing colors. Head down the path towards the swinging bridge from the back of the visitor’s center. There are several trails you can walk along once you cross the bridge. Which moves. A lot. Walk quickly across this bridge once you take your photo. Trust me. There is a reason it is called the swinging bridge…

We took the trail and then scrambled over rocks to get down to the water. This was totally worth it so bring some sturdy shoes!

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Their smiles belie their fear…

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

We were all starving so we decided to head into Duluth for lunch. Thanks to Jessica‘s suggestion, we stopped at Northern Waters Smokehaus which was awesome. All 4 of us loved what we ordered so I would recommend a stop here for sure. It was very busy but we figured out how to order (after some confusion) and enjoyed our sandwiches at a table outside. Alicia wanted a coffee so we trouped down to the Amazing Grace Bakery which is on the bottom floor of the same building. If they have the soft ginger cookies there when you go, please order a dozen and bring them to me. Thanks in advance.

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Next stop was Palisade Head! I had never been here either (who am I?) and it was just as gorgeous as I had heard.  Just take the (very steep) road all the way up to the top and park. Easy peasy!

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest
Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

We headed up to our cute little cabin at Lutsen Sea Villas to check in. Our cabin was right on the lake and we had some amazing views. We didn’t want to miss the sunset so we hopped back in the car and headed to Grand Marais! Once you pull into town, take the main road straight until you almost run into the lake. Take the last right and park in the lot. This path will lead you to Artist’s Point. From the main path, you can head to the right or to the left. Left is cool, rocky shoreline where you can walk all the way to the water. To the right gives you a beautiful, glass-like pond and a cute little lighthouse. Make sure to walk in both directions! Prepare for picture overload. Sorry not sorry.

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Fall Colors Road Trip - Due Midwest

Grand Marais was hoppin’ this night you guys. We had heard good things about the Angry Trout but the wait for outside (it was about 50 degrees) was 45 mins and the inside was an hour and a half. So, we walked into town and ended up at the Blue Water Cafe. Another place we went where everyone liked what they ordered. I got the broasted chicken and it was so tasty. Thank me later. We headed back to our cute little cabin in Lutsen, chatted and hung outside looking at all the stars. It was a pretty great day!

More to come on what we did on the way home in another post!

Fall Color Road Trip to Lake Superior, MN - Due Midwest

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3 Comments

  • Reply Beth

    I’ve been up to the Duluth area so many times and never been to any of the places you’ve stopped so far other than Lutsen! I’m going to have to make a trip up there for some of this!

    October 11, 2016 at 6:51 pm
    • Reply duemidwest

      Oh you should! Glad you found some inspiration 🙂

      October 12, 2016 at 1:19 pm
  • Reply Takisha

    Thank you, nice read.

    October 31, 2016 at 9:01 pm
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