Torrents of wild water plummet 120 feet over the High Falls down to the Pigeon River in this park on the U.S. - Canadian border. The falls, the highest in the state, presented a serious obstacle to river travel, so a "carrying place," or portage, was necessary. American Indians created the ancient nine-mile trail from Lake Superior to bypass the falls. This trail became known as "The Grand Portage." Today, visitors of all abilities can take a one-half mile trail and boardwalk to the falls overlook area. The park is designed for day use only and contains mixed hardwood-conifer forests and hiking trails along the banks of the Pigeon River. The spectacular scenery sets the stage for recreational opportunities that include hiking, photography, and picnicking. The park lies within the Grand Portage Indian Reservation and is bordered by Canada on the north and east. Lake Superior is about one mile east of the park.
Tell me more about this park's wildlife, history, geology and landscape.
In Winter, the High Falls Trail is NOT wheelchair accessible. Snow was cleared from the High Falls Trail on January 15th. The Middle Falls Trail is open for snowshoeing. Snowshoe rentals are available at the park office.
The High Falls Trail is an easy, one mile round-trip hike.
The 5 mile round-trip hike to Middle Falls is along a very rugged trail (lots of rocks and roots, watch your step!) with several hundred feet of elevation change and provides more of a wilderness experience. Average round-trip hiking time for the Middle Falls Trail is at least 3 hours.
The park is also a highway rest area and travel information center. The lobby and restrooms are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Open Hours for the Information Desk, Gift Shop and Exhibit Hall:
(Updated January 15, 2018)
Visitor Center and Rest Area
All park trails and outdoor exhibits are open every day. A picnic shelter is open for public use.
Things to do and see at the park
Need ideas? Here's park staff's list of top stops at the park!
While you're here, experience the majesty and scenic wonder of Minnesota's tallest waterfall! Three viewing decks at High Falls provide park visitors with various vantage points for photography or quiet contemplation.
Interpretive displays provide an introduction to the culture and traditions of the Grand Portage Ojibwe people. Four life-sized murals frame a story of seasonal movement and a subsistence lifestyle that is valued by many to this day. Members of the Ojibwe community directed the development of these displays. Park visitors get a unique 'sense of place' at the only state park located within an Indian Reservation on land owned by the Tribe.
Purchase a Minnesota State Parks Gift Card.
Only use approved firewood!
Help prevent the spread of tree-killing insects by burning only approved firewood, available at all Minnesota State Parks.
Click Here for the Bird Checklist at Grand Portage State Park.
Best time to contact the park:
Daily, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
If no one is available, please leave a message.
9393 East Highway 61
Grand Portage, MN 55605
From the town of Grand Marais, Minnesota, travel north on State Highway 61 for about 36 miles to the Canadian Border. The park entrance is on the west side of the highway, just before you come to the U.S. Customs Station on the US/Canada border.