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Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota

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garmp

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Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« on: July 03, 2018, 04:24:55 pm »
Anyone been to Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota about an hour north of Duluth? We plan on stopping there on our way to the PC Reunion/Rally in Duluth? Can't find too much information on the web. Apparently it is open to the public, but how well marked is it? Is it a well hidden gem or easy to get to? We will be taken our PC to tour, so we don't want any off road trails.

thanks
Bob is what we call our PC 2100, and he has taken us from campers to RV'ers and loving it.

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Tall Guy

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2018, 07:14:12 am »
Been through there many times and never heard of either but I did just come across this website.  http://highwayhighlights.com/2014/11/10-amazing-beaches-on-minnesotas-north-shore/  It appears that there are several places I've missed, Gotta make plans for a return trip to fix that situation.  Every State Park along that road is worth a visit especially Gooseberry Falls.

Enjoy!
Gary

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2018, 07:21:19 am »
We are at Gooseberry Falls now. Just in for a couple of nights. The campground is full. I booked back in March and could only get one night at each site so we're moving sites today. No hookups in the park and we didn't take out all our stuff so not a big deal to move. Checked out lower and middle falls yesterday and planning to do more wandering around today.

That web site is great. We're running up to Grand Portage tomorrow for the living history they do on summer weekends only so we may be able to hit some of those beaches. The site shows the black sand beach at Silver Beach, MN. There is a Black Sand Beach Park. Check out Google maps satellite view for Silver Beach. You can see the black sand beach. We went to one in Hawaii but the sand was from lava. This one is a mineral they mined there.
John, Holly, and sometimes Chloe.
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garmp

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2018, 03:39:30 pm »
Please let me know your opinion of Grand Portage as we hope to make it up there for a day. Won't be able to take in the living history, but am anxious to see the falls and all.
Bob is what we call our PC 2100, and he has taken us from campers to RV'ers and loving it.

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Tall Guy

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2018, 07:16:19 am »
The Grand Portage area is a neat spot.  When there don't miss Grand Portage State Park, it's a day use area with two waterfalls.  One is a nice walk the other is a pretty good hike.  The entry to the park is within sight of the U.S. Customs building.  There is also a nice rest area on a hill with very nice views of Lake Superior.  https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/park.html?id=spk00173#homepage

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2018, 06:18:38 am »
Black Beach was very nice. I hope to post pics when John gets them off the camera. It is crushed rocks rather than fine sand but good to walk on barefoot. They have picnic tables and trash barrels so it would be a great place for a lunch stop. The lake water was ice cold. The beach was pristine. It is a short walk on a well packed, dirt trail. There is a pit toilet at the parking lot.

Note: go to the END of the road. There are three parking lots in that strip and the last one accesses the black beach. The parking lot was big enough we could have pulled around with our 2552 and toad and parked along the edge without blocking anyone. That said, the lot was mostly empty. If it gets crowded people might park and block this so you could wind up dropping your tow vehicle.

Grand Portage was awesome! We made sure to hit on a weekend to catch their living history and it was great. I don't know how it would be without them. Interesting note, these were volunteer interpretive hosts. Their rigs were up behind the maintenance area. They were building a birch bark canoe, cooking with "state of the art" iron kitchen tools, fiddling and explaining music development (really good fiddling), teaching historical navigation, etc. Pretty impressive. There are also really good interpretive exhibits and a film at the Heritage Center which is where you park. It is a collaboration between the native tribe and National Park Service... Which brings us to the casino almost next door. We hit there for a good, inexpensive $5.99 breakfast buffet. They have a campground which was a step up from the standard parking lot with benefits you get at most casinos but still out in the open. There is a slight uplift charge for lake view sites.

We spent so much time at Grand Portage that we had to skip the state park. (I was out voted). We were starving, the rig full of food was back at the rest area at Tettegouche SP, we forgot our snacks and it was John's birthday. We rolled for Grand Marais where they were just shutting down their art festival for the day. Dinner at Harbor House restaurant was excellent! Dinner and dessert on their deck overlooking the harbor was perfect for John's dinner.

Tettegouche has a really nice combined park and state visitor center and rest area right on 61 that seems to allow overnight parking. We saw several semi's in there as well as a couple camping units popped up or with slides out. There is a separate lot for RV's and trucks. Google earth shows a construction site but it is complete. Lobby with restrooms is open 24 hours.
John, Holly, and sometimes Chloe.
Blog: Spiritofthewoods.net

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2018, 06:28:41 am »
Cell phone coverage: this is apparently AT&T country and we have Verizon. We started having problems at Bad River Casino and it has been on and off since then. Sometimes there is no signal, which happens. The weird thing is sometimes we have four bars 4G with great data, email, text messages, and NO phone. Either it doesn't ring when we call out or it says "out of service area". We check phone status and it says " in service area" and "not roaming". We have no problem in towns. We also have no clue. We have an antennae and cell booster but haven't been in one place long enough to make it worth messing with.
John, Holly, and sometimes Chloe.
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garmp

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2018, 03:53:17 pm »
Thanks all for all the great info. Now we just can't wait. Looks like Grand Portage is going to be a must, as well as Black Beach. And the tips on the eateries really clinched it.
Bob is what we call our PC 2100, and he has taken us from campers to RV'ers and loving it.

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2018, 12:42:36 pm »
We were in that area last summer. Spent a week in two harbors rv campground as our base. Beautiful area. 

Going there we stopped at the botanical garden s in St. Cloud.  Itís maintained by the University and second to none. Iím not all that much for botanical gardens but I could have spent all day at this one.

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2018, 10:40:21 am »
Also in the general vicinity if you have interest:
http://www.wolf.org/
https://www.bear.org/website/

Depending on where you like to stay:
http://www.lakeheadboatbasin.com/rv.html
Asphalt parking lot but... overlooks the marina, walk to good restaurants on the other side of the bridge, use of the showers & laundry at the adjacent Fairfield Inn that opened last month, walk the lake front in Canal Park, watch the lift bridge go up to allow cargo ships entry to the harbor https://harborlookout.com/ships#0

Have fun!

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Re: Black Beach or Onyx Beach, Minnesota
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2018, 07:22:39 am »
We stayed at Lakehead Boat Basin a few weeks back. Perfect for touring Duluth. Electric only sites are out on a concrete pier/peninsula and are the better sites. We got the last water/electric site tucked at the edge of the marina - no view but worked as home base. There are nice showers inside the Hotel that are available to marina/rv guests. You can walk or bike to many sights. They also seem to have a good bit of public parking.

We really enjoyed the wolf and bear sanctuaries in Ely that are mentioned above.
John, Holly, and sometimes Chloe.
Blog: Spiritofthewoods.net