Gooseberry Falls is known as the gateway to the North Shore of Lake Superior -and many more waterfalls- and one of the most visited of Minnesota's 67 state parks. (2nd most visited after Fort Snelling, which is located way down within the twin cities grid.) Located close to the road, Gooseberry's falls are popular for their easy access.
The park has been modernized quite a bit since I was a kid, with paved walkways and major improvements to the visitor center. Because of that, I haven't been there much as an adult.
We were last there when Mason & Eric were about 4 years old and I was expecting Johnathan. I believe we attempted to stop a few years later after all five kids were born, but the parking lot was pure madness, so we left and continued north.
But during our Last Hurrah of Summer, a quiet weekday before the Labor Day rush, our younger three kids were able to climb around these beautiful falls at last.
We arrived after dinner time and there were only a few cars in the large lot. Perfection.
As you can see, Lilly has entered a stage of not enjoying having her picture taken.. she is so much like her older twin brothers it amazes me.
Although, they hadn't reached that stubborn stage yet when I took their photo in the same place 12 years before:
A quick photo and she was free to roam about, happy once more.
Johnathan didn't mind photos at all. He & I took a separate trail (we took the longer route to a bridge crossing, those in bare toes & waterproof shoes splashed across river rocks.) Johnathan explores much like I do, stopping to look closer and investigate often. And to my delight - to take pictures.
Late summer, nearing fall, water volume was low, making for a quiet river bed, and plenty of climbing in the gorge. I watched THIS VIDEO back in April of the raging river when ice went out - a different story. Minnesota is always changing.
Upper Falls, on the other side of scenic highway 61, one of five of the Gooseberry River's waterfalls tumbling down toward Lake Superior:
Gooseberry Falls State Park has many stone structures built by the Civilian Conservation Corps.
A major part of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal, the CCC
was designed to provide jobs for young men, to relieve families who had
difficulty finding jobs during the Great Depression in the U.S.
while at the same time implementing a general natural resource
conservation program in every state and territory. In nine years 3 million young men
participated in the CCC, which provided them with shelter, clothing, and
food, together with a small wage of $30 a month ($25 of which had to be
sent home to their families).
Principal benefits of an individual's enrollment in the CCC included
improved physical condition, heightened morale, and increased
Implicitly, the CCC also led to a greater public awareness and
appreciation of the outdoors and the nation's natural resources; and the
continued need for a carefully planned, comprehensive national program
for the protection and development of natural resources.
During the time of the CCC, volunteers planted nearly 3 billion trees
to help reforest America, constructed more than 800 parks nationwide
and upgraded most state parks, updated forest fire fighting methods, and
built a network of service buildings and public roadways in remote
By 1942, with World War II and the draft in operation, need for work relief declined and Congress voted to close the program.
This statue of a CCC worker was enough to get all three kids smiling. :)
Peace, Love, and State Park Appreciation,
Sharing with Our World Tuesday.