When it comes to Lake of the Woods County, most would think of Baudette, Minnesota, resorts and walleye fishing on Lake of The Woods. But there’s so much more to this far away region of Northwestern Minnesota.
My initial exposure to Lake of the Woods County came during a late summer trip across Northern Minnesota in 2009. I’d decided to spend a few days at Zippel Bay State Park while traveling east from Thief River Falls to my eventual journey’s end in the Arrowhead and Superior National Forest. It was not until 2012 however that I decided to really explore the remoteness of Beltrami Island State Forest, a vast area of forest and wetlands, mostly abandoned by homesteaders in the mid-1930s, that I discovered what the area really has to offer: If you want to know what it’s like to have 700,000+ acres of Northern Minnesota all to yourself, drive into Beltrami Island State Forest.
Yes, Lake of the Woods is a very far drive from Minneapolis. But it’s also uniquely Minnesota and very beautiful.