Thursday, September 17, 2015

Kadunce Canyon - Waterfall Paradise

If you like waterfalls and slot canyons (at least, the closest thing the north shore has to a slot canyon), you definitely need to check out the Kadunce River just north of Grand Marais, MN.  There is a well-traveled spur of the Superior Hiking Trail that travels along the east (or north, depending on your point of view) side of the river.  But, to see the waterfalls, you'll need to hike right up the river itself.  For most of the way, this is a relatively easy proposition.  The water is generally very shallow.  

The first waterfall you come to is pretty small but very beautiful.  It is possible to climb around the edge of this one and continue upstream, but not recommended unless you are experienced at scaling very wet, slippery rock.  If you're not used to this, head back downstream to the main trail that follows above the river.  After a short walk along the river via the main trail you can access the river again above the first waterfall.  Another short walk upstream brings you to the second waterfall, shown here.  You won't be able to proceed past this one unless you have climbing gear.  

The canyon walls are very steep here and there is a somewhat deep pool of water at the base of the waterfall.  I was standing in water half-way between my knees and waist to make this photograph.  I wanted to get as close as I could to the waterfall with my 14-24mm lens to make the waterfall appear as large as possible in my image but also still show as much of the surrounding canyon as possible.  This is a fascinating location and one could easily spend a lot of time here just enjoying the view.  It is my favorite location on the Kadunce River.  

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