Classic Roads: Superior National Forest Scenic Byway [With Map]

Feb 12, 2020 View Comments by

Superior National Forest Scenic Byway

Superior National Forest, located in the upper northeast corner of Minnesota, comprises over 3.9 million acres of woods and waters, including some 2,000 glacially-carved lakes and rivers. The forest is a mix of conifers and hardwoods. The larger wildlife species found in the area include deer, moose, Canadian lynx, black bear, and wolves.

The mapped route, about 220 miles in length, begins at the Split Rock Lighthouse on the shore of Lake Superior and then heads west from the lakeside town of Silver Bay. A series of two-lane roads, designated as the Superior National Forest Scenic Byway, leads west roughly 80 miles through small villages to Eveleth, MN. The return routes of MN 169 and MN 1 skirt remote lakes and rivers and thread their way through dense woodlands.

Riding safely on narrow forest roads in this area demands compliance with posted speeds, careful braking on any gravel surfaces, staying on the designated route, and advance planning for food and gas.

Superior National Forest Scenic Byway map

Points of Interest
1. Split Rock Lighthouse
Begin and end your journey at the Split Rock Lighthouse. Tours of the lighthouse, fog-signaling building, oil house, and the lightkeeper’s house are available. The exhibit area offers a 22-minute film about the lighthouse. Find it at 3713 Split Rock Lighthouse Rd, Two Harbors, MN, (218) 226-6372,

2. The Toimi School
At one time this country school, constructed in 1913, had more than 100 students attending it. As the school expanded, it had an apartment for the teacher, and the building also served as a community meeting center and a dance hall. Although classes ended in 1942, the building has been maintained as a historical site. Find it at 6486 Murphy Lake Rd, Brimson, MN,

3. Timber Arch Bridge
Spanning 90 feet over the Partridge River in Hoyt Lakes, MN, this bridge, the first of its kind in Minnesota, opened for vehicles and pedestrians in 1996. The roadway is suspended from wooden arches that rise to 15 feet above it. The bridge is located just off of County Road 110 along Allen Junction Road on the way to the Hoyt Lakes Golf Course.

4. United States Hockey Hall of Fame Museum
This museum honors hockey competition at all levels of the sport. Displays and notable memorabilia convey the rapid-fire, thrilling action that is the game of hockey. Find it at 801 Hat Trick Ave, Eveleth, MN, (800) 443-7825, Also be sure to check out the 110-foot-tall hockey stick located on the corner of Grant Avenue and Monroe Street.

5. Ely, MN
Ely bills itself as an outdoor recreation paradise. Activities include paddling the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, hiking scenic trails, bird-watching, guided fishing tours, and more. The town also offers numerous galleries, shops, and museums.




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