Each year, Lake Superior Magazine has unveiled its Best of the Lake choices – sometimes readers' picks, sometimes those generated by the editors and one year (our 30th anniversary) by our staff members.
In the August/September 2012 issue, we reveal the Top Reader Choices in 12 categories in Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Ontario. The issue features other favorites, including 7 Great Fall Drives around the Big Lake region and more stories, such as those about the history of the Finnish Windmill in Wisconsin and a house in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula built, essentially, from a cut-log woodpile, beet recipes, education trends at a dozen area post-secondary institutions and the music scene in Grand Marais, Minnesota. Pick a copy up from the newsstands or order an issue (or a subscription) by calling us at 888-244-BIG LAKE (888-244-5253), 218-722-5002 or online at www.LakeSuperiorMagazine.com/cat/lsm.html.
Lake Superior Magazine's Best of the Lake
Ask any resident or visitor what is the best way to enjoy the Big Lake and you’ll probably get a different answer every time. And they all would be right. That’s the charm of a region with a wealth of wonder and of wonderful. These favorites were gleaned from online, postcard and emailed votes. The top winners got a star. If you use these as your guide for things to try, you’ll be the winner.
BEST VIEWS: Overlooks
You never know what great view the next curve in the road might bring. Could be a great moose crossing the highway or the perfect ray of sun on a hilltop. Great overlooks, though, stand ever at the ready and readers picked these.
On Brockway Mountain Drive off Highway M-26 near Copper Harbor (you can see the town from the mountain). Contact: Copper Harbor Improvement Association, 906-289-4274, www.copperharbor.org.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Stretching more than 40 miles along Lake Superior from Munising to Grand Marais. Contact: 906-387-2607, www.nps.gov/piro.
*Split Rock Lighthouse
Near Castle Danger, the historic site is operated by the Minnesota Historical Society. Contact: 218-226-6372, www.mnhs.org/places/sites/srl.
The 300-foot cliff is within the 9,346-acre Tettegouche State Park northeast of Silver Bay. Contact: 218-226-6365, www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks.
*Terrace Bay – the township
Voters picked the new downtown lighthouse, the lookout behind the information center and the Aquasabon Gorge overlooks as favorites. Contact: 807-825-3315, www.terracebay.ca.
On the trail near Red Rock, the lookout has views of the town and Nipigon Bay. Contact: 807-886-2245, www.redrocktownship.com.
*Bayfield – the town
You can see Lake views from the hillsides or the waterfront. Contact: 800-447-4094, Bayfield.org.
*Big Bay State Park
Apostle Highlands Golf Course
The course, with public areas, sits 500 feet above Bayfield. Contact: 715-779-5960 or 877-222-4053, www.golfbayfield.com.
BEST GIFT SHOP
In Copper Harbor. Contact: 906-289-4813, thelaughingloononline.com
In Calumet. Contact: 906-337-4016, www.calumetcopper.com.
*Lake Superior Trading Post In Grand Marais. Contact: 218-387-2020, www.lstp.com.
In Grand Marais and Duluth. Contact: 888-880-4369 for Grand Marais; 888-815-5814 for Duluth, www.sivertson.com.
In Terrace Bay. Contact: 807-825-1041.
Young’s General Store
In Wawa. Contact: 705-856-2626, www.youngsgeneralstore.com.
In Bayfield. Contact: 715-779-5200, Stonesthrowbayfield.com.
Keeper of the Light
In Bayfield. Contact: 800-779-4487, www.keeperofthelight.net.
BEST ROCK PICKING
*Agate Beach Park
25 miles southwest of Houghton. Contact: 888-766-0325, www.keweenaw.info.
Little Girl’s Point
906-932-4850, 800-522-5657, www.explorewesternup.com.
*Grand Marais waterfront
Contact: 888-922-5000, grandmarais.com.
Kitchi Gammi Park in Duluth. Contact: 218-730-4300, www.duluthmn.gov/parks.
*Red Rock Waterfront
Contact: 807-886-2245, www.redrocktownship.com.
Off Highway 17 near Terrace Bay. Contact: 807-825-3315, www.terracebayschreiber.ca.
Near Hurley. Contact: 715-561-2922, ironcountywi.com.
Big Bay Town Park
In La Pointe on Madeline Island. Contact: 715-747-2801, www.madelineisland.com.
BEST BOAT WATCHING
In Sault Ste. Marie. Contact: 906-632-7020, www.saultstemarie.com.
Contact: 800-544-4321, travelmarquettemichigan.com.
*Canal Park/Aerial Lift Bridge
Contact: 800-438-5884, visitduluth.com.
Two Harbors waterfront
Contact: 218-834-2600, www.twoharborschamber.com.
*Thunder Bay Harbour
Contact: 807-625-2230, www.thunderbay.ca.
Sault Ste. Marie locks
Contact: 800-461-6020, www.saulttourism.com.
Contact: 800-447-4094, Bayfield.org.
Madeline Island Beach Club
In La Pointe.
Contact: 715-747-3955, madelinebeachclub.com.
*Great Sand Bay
Located along M-26 between
Eagle River and Eagle Harbor.
Contact: 888-766-0325, www.keweenaw.info.
Bete Grise Beach
On Bete Grise Bay about 3 miles east of Lac La Belle, it has a change building and picnic tables. Contact: 888-766-0325, www.keweenaw.info.
On Duluth’s Minnesota Point, the 7-mile long sand spit. Contact: 800-438-5884, Visitduluth.com.
Grand Marais Harbor
Downtown in Grand Marais. Contact: 218-387-2524. 888-922-5000, Visitduluth.com.
*Terrace Bay Beach
A huge sandy beach next to Aguasabon Golf Course in Terrace Bay. Contact: 807-825-3315, www.terracebay.ca.
Pancake Bay Beach
Within Pancake Bay Provincial Park near Batchawana Bay. Contact: 705-882-2209, www.ontarioparks.com.
*Big Bay State Park
The beach is on Stockton Island, part of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Reach the island in your own boat or kayak or on a day-hiker cruise with Apostle Islands Cruises out of Bayfield. Contact the park: 715-779-3397. www.nps.gov/apis. Contact the cruises: 800-323-7619, www.apostleisland.com
BEST VIEWS } Restaurant
In Copper Harbor. Contact: 906-289-4502, www.harborhaus.com.
At Eagle River Inn in Eagle River. Contact: 906-337-0666, www.eagleriverinn.com.
In Grand Marais. Contact: 218-387-1265. www.angrytroutcafe.com.
In Duluth. Contact: 218-722-VIEW (8439), www.jjastorrestaurant.com.
Va Bene Berarducci’s Caffe
In Duluth. Contact: 218-722-1518, www.vabenecaffe.com.
Part of Bluefin Bay on Lake Superior in Tofte. Contact: 800-BLUEFIN (258-3346), ext. 333, www.bluefinbay.com.
In Rossport. Contact: 807-824-2890, www.serendipitygardens.ca.
Red Rock Inn
In Red Rock. Contact: 888-547-1402, www.redrockinn.ca.
On Madeline Island. Contact: 800-822-6315, madisland.com.
In Bayfield. Contact: 888-243-4191, www.bayfrontinnbayfield.net/pierplaza.