McQuade Small Craft Harbor, Protected Access, Safe Harbor



10.5 miles from the Duluth Harbor Entry
9 miles SW of Knife River
Lat 46° 52.48 Lon 91° 55.12


This Minnesota Department of Natural resources facility was developed in partnership with the US Army Corps of Engineers and in cooperation with St. Louis County, Duluth and Lakewood Townships, and the city of Duluth. The facility won multiple awards for design, development, and functionality.

This accessible facility combines boat launching and retrieval in a protected harbor, with a park like setting for Lake Superior tourists who are welcome to walk on the east breakwater and enjoy Lake Superior scenic views.


  • 4 ramps, 50’ x 14’ with 5 feet minimum depth at ramp ends
  • 4 docks; 2 in the ramp area and 2 staging/emergency mooring docks nearby
  • Kayak launch in SW corner
  • 60 car/trailers parking spaces; paved parking lot, plus overflow parking area
  • Public restrooms with running water open seasonally (portable toilets are available during the winter season)
  • 3 acre Small Craft Harbor, behind breakwaters the harbor depth is 8’ minimum entry and 5’ at dock and ramp ends
  • Red navigation light on east breakwater light #16492
  • Restaurant and lodging in the vicinity

Additional park/pedestrian features:

  • Pedestrian tunnel under the highway
  • Interpretive kiosk
  • East breakwater walking trail and viewing area
  • Shore fishing platforms (one accessible) on the east breakwater
  • Map This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.