Elevation Gain
183.00 ft (55.78 m)
Trail type
1.20 mi (1.93 km)
Warming hut
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Kadunce River is located just north and east of Grand Marais on Highway 61, and it provides summer visitors with several waterfalls and rapids. When the river freezes over in the winter, snowshoeing up the canyon becomes a possibility. There is a pull-off parking lot on the lake side of the road. After you park, cross the road and look for the Superior Hiking Trail signs--there is also a trail that follows the river. You can start snowshoeing along the river at any point, but it is easier to walk up the trail a few hundred feet to where there is easier access to the river.

If you’re lucky, there may already be tracks along the river that you can follow. This helps you identify which areas of the river are likely safer to walk along. If this is the case, you may be able to forego using snowshoes. As you move deeper into the canyon the walls become steeper the space between them narrows. After about half a mile you’ll reach a waterfall (likely partially frozen). This is a popular photo spot in the summer months. This is the turn around spot for most people, though if you have ice climbing gear, proper training, and if the waterfall is sufficiently frozen, you may be able to climb up the waterfall and continue.

Be cautious: River ice is never safe. You will see open water along this hike, though the water levels are generally pretty shallow. Avoid the bases of waterfalls, and don't hike when temperatures are warming.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass



Low traffic. Beautiful canyon and ice formations.


Dependent on ice conditions.

Pets allowed


Trailhead Elevation

617.00 ft (188.06 m)

Highest point

800.00 ft (243.84 m)


Family friendly
Near lake or river
Geologically significant

Typically multi-day


Groomed trail


Snowmobiles allowed



Nearby Lodging + Camping


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