Hidden Gems

An RVer's Guide to Superior National Forest


Hidden Gems of the National Forest System

THOR and the National Forest Foundation are bringing you one step closer to the “hidden gems” of the National Forest system. Get tips for RVing at these national forest destinations and why they are some of the RV community’s best-kept secrets.

About Superior National Forest

Superior National Forest is located in Northeastern Minnesota, at the southernmost edge of the boreal forest ecosystem. The Forest is home to thousands of clean lakes, rocky landscapes, iconic megafauna including moose, gray wolf, and black bear, and is a beloved destination for bird watchers and leaf-peepers.

Superior National Forest is perhaps most treasured for its abundant lakes and water resources. Within the forest boundaries are 445,000 acres of surface water. There are almost 2,000 lakes at least 10 acres in size; over 1,300 miles of major streams supporting cold water fisheries; and over 950 miles of major streams supporting warm water fisheries. Fish species such as walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, lake trout, brook trout, rainbow trout, and brown trout can be found in abundance in these waters.

What To Do In Superior National Forest

Clean, clear, and productive water is a big reason people come to the Superior National Forest to fish, swim, boat, paddle, camp, and enjoy the scenery. But the Forest also boasts over 2,000 miles of trails for hiking, hunting, riding, and more for those who want to stay on land. Superior is a bird watcher's paradise with 155 nesting species, the Forest has the greatest number of breeding birds of any National Forest.

A road in Superior National Forest is covered in orange and yellow fall foliage leaves.

Along the 54-mile Superior National Forest Scenic Byway, there are long stretches of unbroken forest, where visitors can enjoy the peace and quiet, take in the scenery, and watch wildlife.

The highlights along the way include:

  1. The Laurentian Divide at the Skjbo Vista Scenic Overlook, where visitors can find spectacular views of the fall color and migrating hawks.
  2. The one-room Toimi schoolhouse, where Finnish immigrant children were educated in the early 1900s.
  3. The White Pine Interpretive Trail, where visitors can walk among and marvel at 250-year white pines.
  4. The Cadotte Lake Recreation Area, with a picnic area and plenty of hiking, fishing, and boating opportunities.

Other popular attractions in the area include:

Exploring Superior National Forest's


The Superior National Forest boasts a unique setting that contains over 2,000 lakes and uncounted connecting streams and rivers. Much of the prehistoric travel, historic travel, and development of the area has been closely linked to these water travel routes. Indigenous people traversed the area for thousands of years in dugout canoes and birch bark canoes. European fur traders and loggers used these routes to transport their goods. Modern-day visitors share a connection with these peoples as they travel the same routes in their boats and canoes today, enjoying the same beautiful scenery and solitude.

Superior National Forest

Top Attractions

Superior National Forest Scenic Byway
A 54-mile road that runs along stretches of uninterrupted forest from the taconite town of Silvery Bay to the logging town of Aurora. This scenic drive will help you escape from it all while immersing in nature.
Skibo Lookout Tower
Boasting sweeping views of Superior National Forest, this viewpoint allows you to feast your eyes on 30 miles of conifers, hardwoods, soaring eagles, migrating hawks, and fall foliage in the autumn season.
Toimi Schoolhouse
An old schoolhouse built by Finnish settlers in 1914, the Toimi School Community Center offers historical information and photos from a time past.
White Pine Trail
As the name suggests, White Pine Trail ventures through large, majestic white pine trees. Enjoy the trail by hiking, running, or walking, and take in the history and observation suggestions while stopping at the nine numbered stops.
Cadotte Lake Recreation Area
Surrounded by spruce, balsam, and pine trees, Cadotte Lake is perfect for anglers who love walleye, northern and panfish fishing. The conveniences of the campground, boat ramp, fishing dock, and swimming beach make this area a great spot for camping and day use.
Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
Featuring rugged cliffs and crags, canyons, gentle hills, towering rock formations, rocky shores, sandy beaches, and thousands of lakes and streams, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is a sight to behold. Carved by glaciers, the area boasts 1,200 miles of canoe routes, 12 hiking trails, and an abundance of campsites nestled deep within the wilderness.
Laurentian Divide Recreation Area and Lookout Mountain
The Laurentian Divide is the separation point between streams that flow north to the Arctic Ocean from the watersheds that flow south through the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean. Streams here also flow north through Canada to Hudson Bay and south into Lake Superior and the Atlantic. In addition to its ecological significance, the area offers hiking and sky trails, a half-mile fitness trail with exercise stations, a scenic viewpoint (Lookout Mountain), snowmobile trails, and recreation areas.
A road in Superior National Forest leads into the woods featuring greens and fall foliage colors of red and yellow.
Plan Your Trip

RV Camping

With more than 40 designated RV campgrounds, the Superior National Forest is an ideal destination for those planning a trip to the area. 

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Hidden Gems Series

Learn more about top destinations and tips for camping at National Forests from fellow RVers and the National Forest Foundation.

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The National Forest Foundation x THOR Industries

In 2020, THOR and the National Forest Foundation entered a partnership that will plant at least 500,000 trees on National Forest lands. Join us by supporting our National Forests and help improve the health of important public lands for future generations.

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