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Hike-in Required
No
Open Year-round
?
ADA accessible
Yes
Guided tours
No
Please respect the outdoors and leave no trace. One tip how to dispose of waste properly: Pack out toilet paper and hygiene products. For more information, visit https://lnt.org/learn/7-principles

Gooseberry Falls is one of the most popular places to visit and explore on the North Shore of Lake Superior. The falls are actually three separate waterfalls along Gooseberry River (Upper, Middle, and Lower Falls) that cascade through a gorge carved by glaciers. It is an easy walk to all three waterfalls, and the farthest from the parking lot is about 0.5 mile. One can easily access all three, and they are all ADA accessible.

Start by heading toward the Upper Falls. Walk up the Gateway Plaza (built by the Civilian Conservation Corps) for an outstanding view of Lake Superior. Keep following the trail toward Upper Falls. There are several paths to meander around the waterfall, including a footpath underneath the Highway 61 bridge, which provides a great view of the waterfall to the west and Lake Superior to the east.

After exploring the Upper Falls, return to the Lower and Middle falls, which is the most popular place in the park. There are several trails that one can follow, or you can wander off-trail around the falls. Note that wandering off the path requires extreme caution and swimming is not recommended. 

This waterfall is a place of pride for Minnesotans, and it is a great place to hike and explore for a couple of hours. It can be combined with trips to neighboring Split Rock Lighthouse State Park and Tettegoche State Park for a weekend trip from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. It is also a very popular place to visit, so the parking lots can easily fill by 10:00 a.m. on weekends. It is strongly recommend to arrive before 9:00 a.m. to get a place to park and enjoy the park with minimal crowds.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

Beautiful waterfall. Views of Lake Superior.

Cons

Big crowds.

Pets allowed

Yes

Address

MN-61
3206
Two Harbors, MN 55616
United States

Features

Big vistas
Waterfalls
ADA accessible

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

Comments

07.06.17
While the falls are definitely a highlight of Gooseberry Falls State Park, the shore line of Lake Superior can be reached if you trek farther down the trail going with the flow of the falls, past the lower parking lot to behind the campground. They have a beautiful spot to picnic on stone and log tables; and the shore line is a must see! The campground at Gooseberry is also very nice - if you can book far enough ahead to catch a weekend spot. The facilities are updated and always clean; the spots, while close together, are more private than other state parks; they are located less than a mile from the upper falls (main attraction); and you have night access to sit on the shore line and star gaze.
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