Abundant Beautiful Blueberries
There have been rare sightings in the ditches of the Gunflint Trail lately. Abadoned unknown vehicles dot the side of the roadway at the end of the Gunflint Trail. It looks almost like a science fiction movie where people are drawn into the woods by a beckoning alien or a bright light. Only these people have been drawn into the woods with buckets in hand by our local magnet, the blueberry.
Friends rarely come visit me at the end of the Gunflint Trail as it is a 56 mile drive for most of them. It’s too far to come to see me but it isn’t too far for them to go to pick blueberries. It seems some of them will even come up the Trail twice in the same week for a bucket of blue beauties.
I like to pick blueberries but often don’t have the time to spend doing it. I have a couple of spots close to my house I like to keep secret so if I have a few minutes I can steal away without having to travel too far. My spots are secret, sacred spots that I have laid claim to. Imagine my surprise when one of the 2 people I have shared a secret spot with brought her family up to pick there! I know I don’t own the land but I am very protective of these places and the berries that grow there. Needless to say, I wasn’t too happy and now know I will need to blindfold and drug her if I ever want to share another spot with her.
If you’re looking for a spot to pick blueberries there are plenty to choose from on the Gunflint Trail. High rocky cliffs, the Magnetic Rock Hiking Trail and any place burned by the Ham Lake Fire is filled with blueberries. This includes the area around the Iron Lake Campground at mid-Trail and then the last 13 miles of the Gunflint Trail. You don’t have to travel very far from the Trail to find a spot that hasn’t been picked over. Numerous lakeshores and islands in the BWCA and just outside of the BWCA are also dotted with blue.
There are enough blueberries for everyone especially if you pull onto one of the many side roads. If you’re willing to walk off trail for a few paces you’ll discover waves of blue. There isn’t much private property on the Gunflint Trail but please be sure to respect the private property there is. And a piece of advice you will want to consider before heading out is to pick as much as you want as long as you want as long as you’re not in my backyard. This means you too Rugby!
Happy Picking and Eating!