Let’s take a walk into Temperance River State Park

TEMPERANCE RIVER STATE PARK

Follow the winding trails on the edge of the Temperance River Gorge and admire the rapid waterfalls surrounded by pine, spruce, cedar, and birch forests. The swift river dug deep holes in and along the river bed. Walk along trails to hidden waterfalls, or hike along the roadside trails in the Upper National Forest and Cross River. Guests came to the camp and had a picnic on the shore of Lake Superior.  

The park is home to a beach, campsites, and hiking trails. The Temperance River flows through the park. It has been designated as an Outstanding Minnesota Waters for its fish habitat.

The park is primarily used for camping, picnicking, and wildlife observation. The Temperance River has a generally shallow gradient with some deep pools. In addition to the temperate climate of

NATURE OF THE AREA

Winter attracts skiers and snowmobilers to traverse the hilly terrain. Newly added to the park, Carlton Peak is popular with climbers and offers even more recreational opportunities for park visitors.    

The park’s vegetation today is very similar to that of the time. Common forest trees include white birch and yellow birch, white pine, spruce, fir and cedar. The park’s topography ranges from low-lying wetlands to arid mountains, reflected in the diversity of vegetation.  

One of the most interesting geological features of the park is the narrow gorge of the Temperance River with its many waterfalls. The rapidly falling river cut through the soft lava of the riverbed. The seething water carried sand and gravel, washing away smooth lava and creating holes. These pits were dug deeper and deeper throughout thousands of years, eventually forming a deep, narrow ravine. As the river found its new course, other craters were high and dry nearby.   

The variety of plant communities in the park is a habitat for various wildlife species. Wildlife sightings are common in the park.    

The Temperance and Cross rivers are trout streams. Brook, brown and rainbow trout have been supplied to the Temperance River over the years. Both streams and brown trout have now become natural populations. Chinook salmon and rainbow trout have also been introduced in the vicinity of the Temperance River.   

HISTORY OF THE AREA

Pierre Esprit Radisson and Médard Chart, Sier des Groselliers, were probably the first white visitors to the North Shore when they ascended the shores of Lake Superior in 1660. Together with the Ojibwe Indians, the French-controlled the North Coast area until 1763. White settlers in the area probably worked in American Fur Company posts along the coast in the 1830s.   

It is believed that the park got its name because, unlike other streams on the North Bank, the river had no barriers at its mouth. Once upon a time, the waters of this particular river flowed into Lake Superior so profoundly and so intensely that there was no accumulation of debris.    

This meant that there was no “bar”. What could you call a river without a bar?    

For an appropriate, albeit slightly ironic, choice, “moderation” is ideal. In 1957, the area became a state park. Campgrounds on both sides of the river and hiking trails and picnic areas attract a steady stream of visitors to this park on the North Bank.

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