Conservation Program Area

Lake Superior

Ned Phillips

The Lake Superior Conservation Area focuses on protection of Lake Superior’s North Shore, one of Minnesota’s most iconic and important landscapes.

The North Shore is a popular destination for its outstanding recreational opportunities, including hiking, paddling, trout fishing, and more. The North Shore is a major flyway for migratory birds and is known for its exceptional bird-watching opportunities. Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory and many other sites along the North Shore provide opportunities to view large numbers of migrating raptors. Peregrine falcons, the fastest known animal on the planet, nest on cliffs by the lake. This area provides opportunities to see boreal owls, black-throated blue warblers, and many other fascinating bird species.

The Minnesota Land Trust has a number of protected properties along the lake, including the unique sand dune pine forest of Duluth’s Minnesota Point, the largest area of dunes and sand beaches along Lake Superior in our state. Several sections of the Superior Hiking Trail and numerous designated trout streams pass through Land Trust protected properties as well. This area is also home to the Land Trust’s largest restoration projects along the St. Louis River’s unique freshwater estuary.

Current Grant Opportunities:

    Explore Projects in this Area

    Protecting Minnesota’s North Woods

    Minnesota’s iconic northern forests are home to some of Minnesota’s most storied species and provide unique outdoor recreation and hunting opportunities. Unfortunately, as the development of forest lands has accelerated over the years, the extensive network of wildlife habitat and publicly accessible open space in northern Minnesota has been threatened. Working to reverse this trend, [...]

    photo by Dennis Udovich

    A Place for Bears

    Standing on the viewing deck at the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary, conversations suddenly shift to excited whispers as a bear ambles onto the scene. This bear is one of many different black bears that stop by the Sanctuary throughout the year to seek out the respite offered by the well-maintained northern forest. And now 360 [...]

    Featured Protected Property

    Protecting Minnesota’s North Shore

    Kyle and Robin Weideman wanted to find that perfect North Shore property for their family to enjoy, while at the same time protecting the land and water that makes the area so important to our state. And now, thanks to their hard work and generosity, almost 1,000 acres of iconic North Shore wilderness wedged between [...]

    Featured Protected Property

    A Rare Find on Lake Superior

    The Minnesota Land Trust has protected thousands of acres of land in northeastern Minnesota, including a number of properties along Lake Superior. Every year properties are monitored by volunteers or staff, looking for any issues or changes to the land. Two years ago, staff member Mark van der Linden made a surprising discovery while walking [...]

    Protected Property

    Protecting Jim Brandenburg’s Land

    The land speaks, and the artist translates
    Judd Lake: Jim BrandenburgThe setting was spectacular: a waterfall gurgling over lichen covered boulders. Tall pines standing sentinel over a pristine lake in the wilderness of northern Minnesota. Boggy, nearly impenetrable wetlands harboring the secrets of the surrounding boreal forest, the tranquility broken only by the raucous cackling of a raven.
    It was a place that eventually brought fame and good fortune to this humble photographer from Luverne, Minnesota who “grew up in a cornfield where nothing was natural.”
    This place is Judd Lake, a remote Border Country lake just off the Fernberg Trail east of Ely.
    Millions of people all over the world immersed themselves in Jim Brandenburg’s iconic photographs of wolves, lynx and bear that he photographed on this remote and wild Judd Lake property. Even James Taylor called, asking to visit Jim so he could see a wolf.

    Miscellaneous Protected Property



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