Partridge Falls

Join Lisa Crayford, author of Waterfalls of Minnesota, on a journey to Partridge Falls, located on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation.

Partridge FallsPartridge Falls is one of my favorite falls on the North Shore. It’s also one that takes some time and effort to reach; while I highly recommend a visit, you need to be very careful. The falls are located on Partridge Falls Road, a minimum-maintenance road full of rocks and potholes. I highly suggest that you take a vehicle with four-wheel drive, as well as an extra tire, bottled water, and some snacks and sandwiches. (If you can do this trip toward the end of September, you’ll be fine driving slowly because the view of fall colors will be amazing.)

The falls are located at the end of Partridge Falls Road. As you make it back to the end of the road and to the Pigeon River, park your vehicle and get ready for a short hike down a wide path. If it has just rained, you will need to dodge some wet spots in the low areas of the trail. As you are hiking along, you will soon hear the water roar. This is a great location to get a high-angle sneak peek of the falls. Next, you’ll want to find the extremely steep rocky and mossy path that will bring you down to the riverside. Thankfully, there are many roots and small trees on the hike down, and you’ll likely need to hang onto them for safety’s sake. As you get closer to the bottom, you’ll encounter an awesome side view of the falls, and if you stand in front of them, you may be showered in mist.

I was just amazed at how in-your-face these falls truly are. When you stand back to admire them, you’ll see that they are twice as wide as they are tall. The water flows out and over a bowed rocky face and pours over multiple jagged rocks with two spillways off to each side. This dramatic scenery makes the falls a great location for self portraits, as you’re not going to find many places with a background like this one!


Liliane Opsomer
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