Entry Point 58 - South Lake
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Entry Point: South Lake #58 Last Visited: July 17, 2022
Maps: Fisher F-13; McKenzie #4 Daily Quota: 2
Fire History:
Nearest Ranger Station: Gunflint Ranger Station, Grand Marais, MN along Hwy. 61 on the North Shore
Portage Length from Parking Lot: None Restroom at Entry Point: Yes

Entry Point 58 - South Lake

Gunflint Ranger District

From Grand Marais, follow the Gunflint Trail (County Road 12) inland for about 43 miles until you reach South Gunflint Lake Road (County Road 50). The turnoff is just a few hundred feet past the Gunflint Lake roadside overlook. Take a right turn onto South Gunflint Lake Road. Follow this gravel road just a 1/2 mile to the Gunflint Lake public water access. Make a left turn into the parking lot.

You can unload your car right next to the lake. This is sometimes a busy access point. Leave room for vehicles with trailers who are loading and unloading their motorboats. Motorboats are common on Gunflint Lake.

From this public landing on Gunflint Lake, reaching South Lake is quite a journey. Therefore, you may want to plan an early start. Paddle east about 6.5 miles down the length of Gunflint Lake until reaching the east end. Gunflint Lake is big water for canoers, so you may have to hug the shoreline if the wind is up, which will make for a longer paddle. From the east end of Gunflint Lake, paddle a short distance up the river into Little Gunflint Lake, then paddle across that lake to its northeast corner. This is about 1.5 miles total. From here do the very short portage into Little North Lake. Once on Little North Lake, cross it, then paddle through the channel connecting it to North Lake. Head nearly due south across North Lake to the Height of Land Portage. This last stretch of paddling was about 3 more miles. Cross the Height of Land Portage (which is about 75 rods) to reach South Lake. Total distance from the public water access on Gunflint Lake to South Lake is over 11 miles. There are eight campsites on South Lake, so you should be able to find an open one.

Gunflint Lodge and Outfitters is just 500 feet down the road from the public water access.

Exploring the Entry Point

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South Lake Entry Point 1
Sign along South Gunflint Lake Road indicating the turnoff for the public water access on Gunflint Lake. This is about a half a mile from the Gunflint Trail.

South Lake Entry Point 2
Ample parking lot to accomodate paddlers cars and boat trailers. There is a circular road coming in each end of the parking lot that also provides access to the boat landing.

South Lake Entry Point 3
Located near the back of the parking lot.

South Lake Entry Point 4
BWCA entry point signs. The box on the far right is where you will find the day permit if you are only doing a day trip into the Boundary Waters.

South Lake Entry Point 5
Close up. Map shows route the the actual BWCA entry points. In the case of South Lake (Entry Point #58), you must travel over 11 miles before you reach the BWCA boundary. Magnetic Lake is much closer.

South Lake Entry Point 6
The public water access boat ramp on Gunflint Lake. If you are headed to South Lake, you'll be paddling off to the right (east) from here.

Now that you've reached the shore of the lake, visit: SOUTH LAKE

Return to List of BWCA Entry Points (sorted by Entry Point Name or by Entry Point #)

PMA #1: Weeny PMA #4: Tick PMA #7: Pitfall PMA #10: Hairy
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PMA #3: Sundial PMA #6: Drag PMA #9: Humpback PMA #12: Fungus
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