Life at the end of the Gunflint Trail  
Mike and I moved up to the end of the Gunflint Trail less than a year after we got married. We were fresh out of college and the year was 1993.  For five years we lived without indoor plumbing and our only source of heat was a wood burning stove. We went to Sport and Travel Shows to market our canoe outfitting business and our business grew. We spent countless hours working and thinking about how we could make Voyageur even better.

Word of mouth and eventually word of moose helped us grow the business even more.  In November of 1999 we grew again but this time it was a baby and not our business.

The birth of our first child Abigail Elaine did little to slow us down. We still spent most of our waking hours eating and breathing Voyageur Canoe Outfitters.  The birth of our second child Joshua John in June of 2001 didn’t slow Mike down but it did slow me down a little.  My role shifted and my first priority became the children and my first baby, Voyageur, took a backseat. 

When the kids started school I had more time to spend on Voyageur again.  As they traveled the longest bus route in the state to school in Grand Marais, Minnesota I once again had time for Voyageur.  When the kids made it through Elementary School priorities changed and my role shifted again, this time my primary role became chauffer.

Up and down the Gunflint Trail we drove… To volleyball practice, birthday parties, football games, hockey practice, band concerts and sleepovers. I drove and drove and drove until finally I was spending more time in Grand Marais or on the road than I was at the end of the Gunflint Trail.  With the kids in High School we decided we needed a place we could spend time in during the winter in Grand Marais.

While living in Grand Marais isn’t as quiet as it is up at the end of the Gunflint Trail it is just as beautiful. Lake Superior, the Sawtooth Mountains and the Superior National Forest surround Grand Marais and outdoor recreational opportunities are endless. But it’s when I’m on the Gunflint Trail that I’m the happiest, surrounded by woods and water I’m more comfortable there than anywhere on the earth.

Soon the kids will be in College and I’ll be able to spend full winters on the Gunflint Trail again. Until then I’ll be the tourist and spend the 2 week Christmas Vacation or week long President’s Vacation on the Gunflint Trail.