The Kom sails under Duluth's Aerial Lift Bridge on April 13. Last year's first saltie didn't arrive until May 7 due to an exceptional ice season on the Great Lakes.

Phil Bencomo / Lake Superior Magazine

Around the Circle This Week: April 17, 2015

The port of Duluth-Superior welcomed its first oceangoing vessel of the shipping season; a new laker visited Thunder Bay; researchers announced that Isle Royale's wolf population has dropped to three; and more news. more »

Apr 17, 2015 3:25 PM Superior Notes

Whitefish Bay.


Around the Circle This Week: April 10, 2015

Vessels spent several days stuck in eastern Lake Superior ice, waiting for icebreakers to clear the way; a snowstorm struck the U.P. and northern Wisconsin; and a documentary series partially filmed in our region is up for an award. more »

Apr 10, 2015 3:42 PM Superior Notes

The waiting convoy.

U.S. Coast Guard / Courtesy Coast Guard Cutter Alder

Vessel Convoy Remains Mired in Eastern Lake Superior Ice

Thick ice on eastern Lake Superior has brought vessel traffic to a standstill near Sault Ste. Marie. More than a dozen ships are mired in ice that one crewman estimated is 6 feet thick. more »

Apr 8, 2015 4:48 PM Superior Notes

Around the Circle This Week: April 3, 2015

The Lake is 8 inches above long-term average, according to the latest report; Minnesota Sea Grant's director retired; an update on the Algoma Central Railway; and more news. more »

Apr 3, 2015 4:02 PM Superior Notes

Paul L. Hayden / Lake Superior Magazine

Around the Circle This Week: March 27, 2015

Signs of spring in the Lake Superior region, including ore boats back on the Lake, and more news from the week. more »

Mar 27, 2015 11:15 AM Superior Notes

Around the Circle This Week: March 20, 2015

Betty Lessard of Betty's Pies fame passed away on Thursday, a spectacular display of northern lights erupted on St. Patrick's Day and the first lakers prepared to leave port for the March 25 opening of the Soo Locks. more »

Mar 20, 2015 4:05 PM Superior Notes

Betty Lessard, Namesake of Betty's Pies, Passes Away at 90

Betty Lessard, who turned a humble fish shack into the iconic Betty’s Pies restaurant on Minnesota’s North Shore, passed away on Thursday. She was 90 years old. more »

Mar 20, 2015 11:59 AM Superior Notes

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Lake Level Report: March 16, 2015

Lake Superior's monthly mean level in February was 8 inches above long-term average. more »

Mar 16, 2015 10:32 AM Superior Notes

Phil Bencomo / Lake Superior Magazine

Around the Circle This Week: March 13, 2015

We rode on the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Alder during an ice-breaking operation in Duluth; two wolves crossed the ice to Isle Royale, but left soon after; a donation brought part of the vessel Islay back to Bayfield; and more news. more »

Mar 13, 2015 4:31 PM Superior Notes

Bob Berg / Lake Superior Magazine

Aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Alder, Breaking Ice in Duluth

We tagged along with members of the Lake Superior Marine Museum Association to see the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Alder at work in the Duluth harbor and on Lake Superior. more »

Mar 13, 2015 12:47 PM , Superior Notes

Lake Superior's ice cover on March 6, 2015.


Around the Circle This Week: March 6, 2015

The Apostle Islands ice caves drew 12,000 people during the opening weekend, then were closed briefly during a winter storm; Grand Marais, Minnesota, was named America's Coolest Small Town; and the Duluth Traverse Trail received $65,000 in funding. more »

Mar 6, 2015 4:40 PM Superior Notes

Phil Bencomo / Lake Superior Magazine

Around the Circle This Week: February 27, 2015

Last winter's viral sensation, the iced-over mainland sea caves of Apostle Islands National Lakeshore will open to the public on Saturday. Plus, more news from the week that was. more »

Feb 27, 2015 4:00 PM Superior Notes


Around the Circle This Week: February 20, 2015

Lake Superior's ice cover topped 90 percent this week, though the Apostle Islands ice caves are not yet accessible; Fort William built the world's largest snow maze; the first standalone craft brewery opened in Grand Marais, Minnesota; and more. more »

Feb 20, 2015 4:48 PM Superior Notes

Lake Level Report: Mid-February 2015

Lake Superior was 9 inches above its long-term January average. Net water supplies for the month were below average for the first time in nearly year. As a result, the Lake's level declined an inch more than normal for the month. more »

Feb 16, 2015 10:04 AM Superior Notes

Around the Circle This Week: February 13, 2015

The National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning in parts of Michigan's Upper Peninsula, former Sault Ste. Marie mayor Jim McIntyre died in an accident and a Washburn resident was chosen to lead the International Ship Masters Association. more »

Feb 13, 2015 4:08 PM Superior Notes

Tau Kappa Epsilon's snow sculpture of London took first place in the annual Michigan Tech Winter Carnival statue competition.

Courtesy Michigan Technological University

Around the Circle This Week: February 6, 2015

Winter Study dispatches from researchers on Isle Royale, interest in perch fishing grows, the winners of MTU's snow sculpture competition were announced and the IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships concluded in Cable. more »

Feb 6, 2015 4:24 PM Superior Notes

Around the Circle This Week: January 30, 2015

Ryan Anderson wins the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, while Martha Schouweiler took the mid-distance title; a group convened in Duluth to guide Big Lake fisheries management; the Sault EDC bought Searchmont Resort; and more news. more »

Jan 30, 2015 4:10 PM Superior Notes

U.S. Coast Guard

Using Parachute System on Duluth-Made Plane, Pilot Safely Ditches in Pacific

An innovative safety system by Duluth-based Cirrus Aircraft helped a pilot safely ditch his Cirrus SR22 in the Pacific on Sunday after the aircraft ran out of fuel. We featured Cirrus in the February/March issue of the magazine. more »

Jan 26, 2015 4:52 PM Superior Notes

Around the Circle This Week: January 23, 2015

Grand Marais is in the running for America's Coolest Small Town, a spooky former nursing home in Duluth will make a TV appearance, John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon activities began ahead of the race start on Sunday. more »

Jan 23, 2015 3:01 PM Superior Notes

Courtesy Beyond the Porch Productions

Friends Bike Around the Lake in Keweenaw-Filmed "Superior" [Q&A + trailer]

Los Angeles-based Beyond the Porch Productions set up shop in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula last summer to film “Superior,” a coming-of-age story about friends who bike around Lake Superior in 1969. The team released a trailer in December. more »

Jan 23, 2015 10:30 AM Superior Notes

About this Blog

Superior Notes are columns about Lake Superior and the people and places around it from Lake Superior Magazine. The blog has several contributors.

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