Return to Home Page 221 West First Street
Duluth, MN 55802
1-800-232-0707
Lake Vermilion Trail Implementation
Background
The unique Lake Vermilion area in northeast Minnesota serves as a special year-round destination for tourism. During the boating season, the lake offers innumerable opportunities for exploring and fishing. In winter, the local snowmobile clubs mark safe, color-coded snowmobile trails across the lake. All year round, the area serves as a gateway to the Superior National Forest and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), and the community resources of Cook, Tower, and the Bois Forte Reservation offer a wide range of opportunities for lodging, hospitality, and entertainment.

In 2011, the Arrowhead Regional Development Commission (ARDC) and the Lake Vermilion Resort Association (LVRA) commenced an eight-month planning process for the future development of the Lake Vermilion Trail, a trail facility connecting the lake and its residences and businesses to the communities of Cook and Tower. The process was facilitated by ARDC and relied on a local steering committee for feedback and guidance. The process helped the LVRA and other key partners determine the feasibility of constructing a paved trail connection between the City of Cook and the City of Tower. ARDC worked with the steering committee to develop a vision, goals, strategies and action steps for the trail; to identify potential trail route segments; to estimate construction costs; to help identify management structure options, and garner public input. The final plan can be found HERE.

In 2013, LVRA and ARDC initiated a feasibility study for two western segments of the Lake Vermilion Trail as the next step in the trail development process. The purpose of the feasibility study was to determine and document optimal and alternative routes for the proposed Lake Vermilion Trail between the City of Cook, Lake Vermilion, and Wakemup Campground. The study was to be used as a guide for the first phases of trail development for outlining a strategy for future phases of trail development. The final feasibility study can be found HERE.

In 2015, members from the local steering committee requested ARDC to provide technical assistance with efforts to implement plans for the Lake Vermilion Trail. These efforts are currently underway and will be led for one year by a planner from the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program.

In 2016, in conjunction with implementation efforts, Northwoods Friends of the Arts sponsored a trail logo contest, which awarded a $500 cash grand prize furnished by Bois Forte Reservation Tribal Government, and smaller prizes donated by Zup's Food Market, Sulu's Café, Comet Theater, and Subway to runners-up. The winning logo, designed by Sue Wolfe, was selected out of 21 other entries. Runners-up included Wendy Frost (Angora, Minn.), Dean Malenius (Eveleth, Minn.), Jane Wertanen (Virginia, Minn.), and Judith Marie Allen (Bloomington, Minn.). The winning entry will be used for signing, correspondence, and publicity of the Lake Vermilion Trail. All logo entries will remain available for viewing at the Northwoods Friends of the Arts gallery in Cook through Summer 2016. Find more information HERE.

Meetings
The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee meets regularly to discuss implementation efforts of the Lake Vermilion Trail. The following listings include the date, time, place, and topic of past and scheduled future meetings.

December 2, 2015, 10:00 am, US Forest Service LaCroix Ranger Station

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to re-engage area stakeholders of the Lake Vermilion Trail at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, December 2, 2015, at the LaCroix Ranger Station in Cook. The meeting included a review of past planning efforts, a discussion of priority trail routings, and a presentation about potential trail management structures and funding sources.

December 2, 2015 - Meeting Agenda
December 2, 2015 - Meeting Summary

January 6, 2016, 12:30 pm, Minnesota DNR Office (Tower, Minn.)

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to continue work on Lake Vermilion Trail development at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, January 6, 2016, at the Minnesota DNR Office in Tower. The meeting included an update on trail development efforts, a discussion about regional significance designation, and continued exploration of funding and management structures.

January 6, 2016 - Meeting Agenda
January 6, 2016 - Meeting Summary

February 10, 2016, 10:00 am, Greenwood Town Hall

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to continue work on Lake Vermilion Trail development at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, February 10, 2016, at Greenwood Town Hall in Greenwood Township. The meeting included an update of ongoing trail development efforts and a break-out session for focused trail planning, funding, and management.

February 10, 2016 - Meeting Agenda
February 10, 2016 - Meeting Summary

March 9, 2016, 10:00 am, US Forest Service LaCroix Ranger Station

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to continue the implementation process of the Lake Vermilion Trail at 10:00 am on Wednesday, March 9, 2016, at the US Forest Service LaCroix Ranger Station in Cook. The meeting included further discussion on development efforts.

March 9, 2016 - Meeting Agenda
March 9, 2016 - Meeting Summary

April 13, 2016, 10:00 am, Tower Civic Center

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to continue the implementation process of the Lake Vermilion Trail at 10:00 am on Wednesday, April 13, 2016, at the Tower Civic Center in Tower. The meeting included a focused discussion on trail outreach efforts, trail management, and routing.

April 13, 2016 - Meeting Agenda
April 13, 2016 - Meeting Summary

May 24, 2016, 9:00 am, Greenwood Town Hall

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee held a meeting to continue the implementation process of the Lake Vermilion Trail at 9:00 am on Tuesday, May 24, 2016, at Greenwood Town Hall. This meeting included a discussion on trail master planning, outreach efforts, and more.

May 24, 2016 - Meeting Agenda
May 24, 2016 - Meeting Summary

September 7, 2016, 10:00 am, US Forest Service LaCroix Ranger Station

The Lake Vermilion Trail Steering Committee will hold a meeting to continue the implementation process of the Lake Vermilion Trail at 10:00 am on Wednesday, September 7, 2016, at the LaCroix Ranger Station in Cook. This meeting will include a discussion on trail master planning, outreach efforts, and more.

September 7, 2016 - Meeting Agenda


Check back for meeting summaries, date announcements, and other information.

For More Information
For more information on Lake Vermilion Trail Implementation, please contact:

Russell Habermann
Associate Planner
ARDC
221 West First Street
Duluth, MN 55802

Phone: 218-529-7552 (direct)
Toll-free: 1-800-232-0707 ext. 552.
Fax: 218-529-7592
Email: rhabermann@ardc.org

Search

Regional Planning Division Programs
NE MN Area Transportation Partnership (ATP)
North Shore Management Board (NSMB)
Northern Aero Alliance
Healthy Northland



ARDC Directions
Click HERE for Directions and Parking Information

Select a Font Size Set Display to the Normal Font Size Set Display to a Larger Font Size Set Display to the Largest Font Size