Temperance State Park and Carlton Peak

Tofte, Minnesota 55615

Temperance State Park and Carlton Peak

Temperance State Park and Carlton Peak Professional Review and Guide

"From the shores of Lake Superior, along the narrow tumultuous river gorge, and up to Carlton Peak for a magnificent overlook of Lake Superior and the forests. Native Americans in the area descriptively named the river here Kawimbush, “deep-hollow,” for the gorge that cuts through the basaltic rocks. Its current name, Temperance River, was bestowed later, when the voyageurs—probably jokingly—referred to the fact that the river lacked a bar (a sand bar) at the mouth of the river. Carlton Peak, one of the most prominent peaks along the shore, was named after Reuben Carlton who took part in an early geologic survey of the area.

The peak is actually made up of a large inclusion, or block, that arose from deep within the Earth’s crust. This rock, anorthosite, is composed of the mineral Labradorite, which is light green when freshly broken and then turns a whitish color. The quarry on the south side of the mountain has supplied rocks for water fountains, a breakwater in Taconite Harbor, and the ranger station in Grand Marais. This hike begins with a tour along the river gorge, then veers off, leaving the river to climb the peak. Special attractions: Temperance River gorge and overlooks of Lake Superior."

Temperance State Park and Carlton Peak Reviews

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i love this trail! i go here a few times every winter when i snowboard at lutsen mountain. it's a teeny bit difficult at the bottom which adds to the fun, but the best part is the view from the top -- absolutely wonderful. it's long enough to spend a bit of time soaking in nature. it's a great break from snowboarding -- esp. at the beginning & end of the season when the snow's pretty mushy. i've never gone in the summertime but i'll bet it'd be great w/the little river flowing and some flowers a'bloomin'.

Temperance State Park and Carlton Peak Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
924 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
600 feet
Trailhead Elevation
1,500 feet
Top Elevation
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, 800-652-9747
Local Contacts
Superior Hiking Trail map, state park trail map for the Temperance River section. USGS quads: Schroeder and Tofte.
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018