Sunday, June 26, 2016

Gooseberry Falls State Park

As I drove away from Duluth I could feel the  industrial world fall away.

There were long stretches of wildness separating towns so small they boasted only one or two cabins, a motel  that was still 'closed for the season',  plus an occasional gas station that sold not much more than smoked fish and live bait.  I bought some fish, but not the bait.

This pleased me--a 'natural' bridge/tunnel that gave wildlife a safe means of crossing the road.   At different times I saw some deer, a moose, a fox, and a porcupine.

Betty's Pies was recommended by Jeanie---
This restaurant/bakery opened in 1956.  Their bakers make approximately 33.000 whole pies per year  (198,000 slices).  I had a cup of tea and a slice of cherry pie.  Very good.  

They are famous for their "Pie Shake".  Yep, they blend together ice cream with a slice of your favorite pie, complete with the crust.  I passed on this one--'drinking ones pie' did not sound appealing to me.

Gooseberry Falls State Park

I had been passing some minor falls along the way that came tumbling out of the forest to plunge into Lake Superior,  but Gooseberry Falls was more than minor.  I stopped for a closer look.

Starting at the top of the falls there was a staircase descending down into the valley, across a bridge and then back up the other side of the falls....

...finally crossing another bridge at the top of the falls to return to the visitor's center.  Not terribly far but the many stairs were a  definite obstacle I decided to challenge.

Why do I mention this?  Because this was a real test of my new heart valve--and Babe performed famously. I was feeling more sure all the time that I would be able to enjoy these hikes and climbs without worry.  

I love the way these trees reach their roots out like long fingers to hold onto the eroding bank.

This was the bottom and I was going to climb all the way back to the bridge at the top of the falls.

I made it!

The highway is on top of us and the footbridge hangs below it.

We had a great view all the way to the lake.

This wall was built between 1936 and 1940 by the Civilian Conservation Corps enrollees as a retaining wall for the parking concourse.   

It is 300 ft long and 15-25 ft high and it was designed after a castle.

The gooseberry bush grows all along the river.


The berries ripen in the fall, make excellent jam but they are very very tart.  It was my husband's favorite jam.

I spent the night in the State Park with Jonathan as my only neighbor.


  1. Mr. Livingston (Seagull I presume)?
    Beautiful views, and congratulations on Babes successful test drive!

  2. That area looks even more magical than I've heard about through my cousin who lives in Madison. Really something special.

    1. Yes, it is magical. So pristine, not congested, no smog, only the sounds of the birds and crickets.