Winter Trip Planning Resources

Winter is Here! And there is so much to experience at the Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts that we wanted to put everything you need to know in one place. Listed below are your Winter Trip Planning Resources.

Winter Offer

Offers

Our most popular offer this winter is the Winter 4 for 3 special. This offer gives you one FREE night at any of our resorts when you stay for three or more nights. This offer is exceptional because it really allows you to experience everything a North Shore winter has to offer. There are other offers available too! We have Ski and Stay Packages, Romance-themed Packages or you can simply save by booking online. See all of our offers here.

Lodging OptionsTemperance Landing

We have many cozy lodging options to choose from between Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing. The best part is that most feature whirlpool tubs, wood-burning fireplaces and/or stunning Lake Superior views. If you’re unsure of where to begin, check out this playlist on our YouTube page which features lodging tours of all of our unit styles or give our friendly reservationists a call. They would be happy to assist you in finding the perfect option.

Things to Do

We set up our guests to be as busy as they want to be on vacation. For some, this means reading a book next to the in-room fireplaces. For others, it means learning how to cross county ski for the first time in a forest blanketed with snow. This year, we have expanded our activities program to offer more of the guided tours and adventures that our guests love.

Outdoor Pool and Hot Tub

Complimentary activities include cross country skiing, snowshoeing, craft classes taught by local artists, ice skating, shuttles to the local winery and more. Guests also have the ability to check-out snowshoes or cross country skis and head out on their own. Additionally, we have two ice skating rinks – one at Bluefin Bay and one at Surfside.

And there’s more! We also have Waves of Superior Spa, the outdoor pool and hot tub (for guests of Bluefin Bay) plus the indoor pool at Surfside (for guests of Surfside and Temperance Landing).

MEA Weekend on the North Shore

At Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts, we like to celebrate all things Halloween on MEA weekend! And Halloween is one of our FAVORITE holidays. Creative costumes, scary movies, tasty treats – what’s not to love? Pumpkin

We begin with our annual pumpkin carving contest for guests.  There are over $300 in prizes and three different age categories. You can pick up your pumpkin and carving tools at Guest Services beginning on Friday. We will be judging and presenting prizes to the winners on Saturday, October 23rd after 4pm. See official rules here: Pumpkin Carving Contest

Next, we like to set the tone for the weekend with a Halloween themed movie. We’ll be playing Halloweentown (what else!?) in the Tofte Room, across from the playground at Bluefin Bay.

Then on Saturday morning, we begin the medallion hunt! Find the Bluefin Bay medallion and win a $100 gift card! The hunt begins at 8 a.m. and clues will be released every two hours after that. Saturday evening we are hosting a picnic style event outside on the BBQ patio from 5-8 p.m. The picnic will feature live music, bonfire pits, BBQ and a bar (cash or room charge only).

And there’s plenty more to do other than our Halloween festivities. We’ll have guided hikes, kids adventure club, fall color kayak tours, live music, wilderness canoeing and more! All activities are complimentary for guests of Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing. See the full schedule here. Plus, Grand Marais will again be hosting its annual Moose Madness Festival.

Book Early for Storm Season

Fall is here! And with it comes one of the most entertaining seasons on Lake Superior. Storm Season, also known as the Gales of November, begins in late October and lasts through mid-December. The low-pressure systems that pass over Lake Superior result in strong winds which have the potential to produce massive waves, like the ones in this video.

Wave Watching at the Bonfire Pit

And if you are reading this post, then you know that no place brings you closer to Lake Superior than the Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts. Our lodging facilities at Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing provide a panoramic view of the Great Lake. We also have seating areas, pools and restaurants that offer stunning views of dazzling Lake Superior.

Room at Bluefin Bay with Lake Superior Views

Combine Lake Superior’s wildest season with our resorts’ spectacular views and you have a match made by Mother Nature herself. Throw in wood burning fireplaces, whirlpool tubs, complimentary activities plus delicious on-site dining options and you have the perfect late fall vacation. To make it even sweeter, we offer a third night free when you stay anytime between October 24 and November 30th (excluding Thanksgiving weekend). Be sure to book soon as this time is filling up quickly and when nature puts on a show, you want a front row seat.

Family at the Bonfire Pit with Waves

 

Waves & Wellness Weekend

Waves & Wellness Weekend

The team at Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts is VERY excited to host Waves & Wellness Weekend this November! We hope you can join us for what is sure to be a relaxing and rejuvenating weekend combining two of our favorite things: self-care and Lake Superior. We have been receiving plenty of questions regarding the upcoming event so we wanted to provide a sneak peek. The schedule will be finalized and posted on September 23rd but for now, this should give you an idea for what to expect.

Winter at Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts

Lodging Offer

The event takes place November 12-14th and we expect lodging will fill up quickly for the weekend. Additionally, we have a great offer during that time period. The Gales 3 for 2 offer means that when you stay two nights, you get a free night on us! This offer is available at Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing. Book Here or give us a call at 218-663-7296.

Activities

All activities are included in your stay but advance sign-up is required. Sign-up opportunities will be available beginning on September 23rd when the schedule is posted. Activities will include craft classes, guided hikes, bonfires, yoga and HIIT classes plus a Signature Event on Saturday night that you won’t want to miss! The events and activities will be female-focused but anyone is welcome.

Signature Event

This year’s Signature Event will feature Motivational Speaker and Energy Master, Kristen Brown! Kristen is a frequent media contributor on topics relating to business, professional development, and personal growth. She has been a guest on over 500 media outlets including CNN, Inc., NBC, ABC, Live with Kelly & Michael, HLN, BBC, Fox, Psychology Today, Working Mother, and many more. Kristen writes frequent articles for The Huffington Post, Lifehack, LinkedIn, and her own blog. The Signature Event will also have wine hosted by the North Shore Winery and appetizers hosted by Bluefin Bay.

The Name

Return guests have noted that this weekend was previously known as Girls Gone North. We changed the name this year to give more focus to our restorative activities and the November Gales. Rest assured, the female-focused weekend will be similar to previous years and promises to be enjoyable and entertaining.

“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” – Jon Kabat-Zinn

 

Local Craft Classes

There’s something about the Autumn season that awakens the artist in all of us. The colorful leaves all around and the chill in the air bring out our creative side. At Bluefin Bay Family of Resorts, we embrace that inspiration with local craft classes.

The classes below are completely free for guests staying at Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing. Space is limited so be sure to reserve your spot by clicking on the links below. No artistic experience is necessary for any of these classes and all supplies are provided.

September 4 | Introduction to Alcohol Ink Painting with Cheryl LarsonAlcohol Ink Painting Intro Class

Classes at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm. Alcohol inks are a highly pigmented and fast drying medium that lends itself to unique, complex looking patterns, abstracts and landscapes in very little time. 

September 9 | Introduction to Tapestry Weaving with Julie Arthur

Classes at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm. In this class, the basics of setting up a “loom” will be taught, followed by instruction on the basics of weaving. 

September 11 | Birch Bark Stars with Julie KeanBirch Bark Star

Classes at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm. Julie is an artist at North House Folk School and will be teaching how to create an 8 point star in the Scandinavian style.

September 14 | A Day of Felting with Julie Arthur

The 10:30 am class will feature Needle Felting and the 1:30 pm class will focus on Wet Felting

September 18 | Carolina Snowflakes with Jane Shinners

Classes at 10:30 am and 1:30 pm. The Carolina Snowflake is simple to make and useful as a Christmas tree top ornament or a decorative wall hanging. Jane specializes in basketry utilizing a variety of materials such as birch bark, red osier dogwood and rattan reed.

September 21 | Introduction to Basket Weaving with Mary Jane Huggins

Class is at 12:30 pm. Learn the basics of weaving and leave with a finished basket that can be used for serving bread, holding mail, or keeping special treasures.

September 23 | Silk Scarf Dyeing Workshop with Julie Arthur

This workshop is from 12:30 – 4 pm and you can drop in any time! No sign-up necessary. Learn how to dye your own silk scarf and take it home with you! The workshop includes a briefsilk scarf dying at Bluefin Bay introduction to the dyeing method. You’ll then pick your colors and design, and go to work. 

5 Hikes for Kids in the Lutsen-Tofte Area

“Where can I take my kids for a hike?”

Kid Hiking in the Woods

This is a question we frequently receive at the Bluefin Bay Guest Services desk, so we thought it might be helpful to construct a list of the 5 best hiking trails for kids in the Lutsen/Tofte area.

What constitutes a great trek for kids, you ask? The formula we utilized is equal parts easy, safe terrain + fun stuff to look at = great hike for kids.

Caribou Falls This hike is just over a mile long and is an out and back. There is a bit of a steep climb toward the end but the waterfall you get to see is worth it. Pro Tip: This is also a great spot for swimming!

Temperance RiverTemperance River State Park is a super cool place to explore. The trail winds along the river for quite a while and you can go as far as you want. Important: You do need to be careful with younger kids as there are some steep overlooks!

Leveaux MountainThis is a bit of a longer hike at 3.2 miles. Leveaux Mountain shares a parking lot with the popular Oberg Mountain, but Leveaux is less busy and has fewer overlooks. The woods are fun to explore and there is one awesome overlook at the top. Pro Tip: This hike is lined with Maple Trees toward the top and is beautiful in the fall!

May Calendar WaterfallLake AgnesEnjoy a leisurely trek to beautiful Lake Agnes. This section of the Superior Hiking Trail will take you through a variety of different forests (Maple, Cedar, Birch) and offers an opportunity for swimming when you arrive. Pro Tip: Take the spur trail to White Sky Rock. You won’t regret it!

Cascade River State ParkCascade is one of the most popular State Parks in Minnesota and for good reason! The park is located where the river flows into Lake Superior and features beautiful waterfalls the whole way down. Pro Tip: If you are in the mood for something super quick, you only need to hike about a quarter of a mile to see the first (and largest) waterfall!

4th of July Festivities

The 4th of July is nearly here! As we celebrate our nation’s independence here on the North Shore, we also celebrate all things summer – the Big Lake and its cool breezes, the endless miles of trails to explore by foot or by bicycle, kayak and canoe excursions, golfing, fishing, outdoor dining, bonfires on the beach complete with s’mores, and time spent with friends and family making memories! If you are joining us for 4th of July weekend you will certainly be able to make some memories as we have a full line-up of fun activities!

>>> Make sure to sign up for all activities here!

Friday, July 2nd

Saturday July 3rd

Sunday July 4th

Area Events Update

The North Shore is well known for having fun, diverse events. In a typical year, there are major events every weekend with smaller events sprinkled throughout the calendar. We all know that this is not a typical year. Some events are still being decided upon while others have decided to move forward with safety precautions front of mind. Here a few updates for you.

Superior Spring Trail Race

The Superior Trail Races occur on the Superior Hiking Trail every year in the Spring and the Fall. These muddy, rigorous trail races are an incredible event to partake in and just to witness. This year, the spring event will occur on May 20-23rd and includes 12.5K, 25K and 50K events each day. There are extensive safety protocols in place and all race information emphasizes that it will be an “extremely low-key” experience. These races were cancelled in 2020 and we are very glad to see that they are back and will be held with the safety of the community as the top priority.

Biking Events

We have a lively biking community here in Cook County and are well-known for our fun, varied events.  The two being held this summer are Le Grand Du Nord (Saturday, May 29th) and theLutsen 99er Mountain Bike Race Lutsen 99er (Saturday, June 26th). Le Grand Du Nord is a gravel cycling event which features distances of 110 miles, 54 miles and 26 miles. Lutsen 99er is a mountain biking race which features distances of 99 miles, 69 miles, 49 miles and 25 miles as well as a kids’ race on Sunday. Le Grand is not allowing for any spectating this year, and the Lutsen 99er is only allowing for spectating at the finish line at Lutsen Mountains. Both of these events will be modified with safety in mind.

Grand Marais Arts Festival

The Grand Marais Arts Festival is a favorite event for many of our return guests! This year, it will be held the weekend of July 10-11th and the artist line-up looks amazing. Unfortunately, for the first time this year, it will not be held near the Grand Marais harbor. It will instead be located up at the Community Center due to road construction. Certain details are still being figured out, so the Grand Marais Art Colony encourages you to sign-up for their e-newsletter to receive updates on the event.

Other Events

There are a few other area events that have confirmed they will be happening this year including the Spring Sound Garden, Hovland Arts Festival, and the North Shore Water Festival to name a few. We are still waiting to hear details on the 4th of July celebration in Tofte, but the event hosts have said that they do plan to hold the event in some capacity. In order to keep updated on area happenings this summer, we recommend checking out the Visit Cook County Area Events Calendar. 

 

 

Plan Your Summer Vacation

It’s happening. Bright pops of green in the trees. Colorful wildflowers popping out of the ground. Wildlife sightings on the backroads. Summer on Lake Superior is more than a season, it’s a feeling.

Bluefin Bay Spring

Early Summer Offers

Don’t wait to start making the most of summer. If you can join us earlier in the season, you can take advantage of a couple offers we have available. If you are able to come up before May 27th, you can take advantage of our Spring Fever Special, which offers 3 nights for the price of 2. Then for the entire month of June, we are offering 4 nights for the price of 3.

Summer Activities

Summer activities are now live on our website through July! And let me tell you, it’s going to be a FUN summer. We have brainstormed new adventures and added more of our already popular activities.  From mountain biking to sea kayaking, it won’t be hard to find something to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. Or, if you prefer a more relaxing vacation, sign up for a yoga class or a naturalist program. Live music by the bonfire, anyone? There are options for everyone.

Lodging Tours to Help You Plan

As you plan your trip, we wanted to remind you that we have tours of nearly every unit style at Bluefin Bay, Surfside and Temperance Landing. This way you can truly get an understanding of the layout and the feel of a unit before you book.

 

Waterfalls Update

It has been a spectacular waterfall season on the North Shore so far and it keeps getting better! The spring season started off rather dry to the point where we were under fire danger warnings for a little while. Around mid-April, the weather turned and we had a full week of rain. The steady rain melted all remaining snow and got the rivers to really begin to run. Since then, the inland lakes have also opened up which adds even more water. The waterfalls are now flowing at their full glory and we expect they will continue to be spectacular through May.

The unique geologic formations along the North Shore allow visitors to witness breathtaking waterfalls ranging from the highest in Minnesota – the 120-foot High Falls at Grand Portage State Park (pictured above) — to raging falls right in Bluefin Bay’s back yard. If you’ve never experienced our spring waterfalls, it’s truly a sight to be seen, heard and felt. Check out our favorite waterfalls videos below or see our waterfalls page for more information on our favorite hikes.