White Sky Rock & Lake Agnes: Great Hike in Lutsen
White Sky Rock & Lake Agnes: Popular Hike in Lutsen
This 2-3 hour hike will take you past Lake Agnes and up to the incredible view at White Sky Rock. Start at the Superior Hiking Trail (SHT) trail head at County Rd. 39 on the Caribou Trail in Lutsen (mile marker 92.6). There is limited way-side parking on the dirt county road. Take the trail on the north side of the road (which will head you in a westerly direction) a short distance, then cross the Caribou Trail to continue to Lake Agnes.
Trail to Lake Agnes
This is a beautiful hike anytime of year, but especially in the fall because of the maple canopy glowing bright orange and red! The trail starts out easy and goes through some low, wet areas. During this hike on September 19th, there had been quite a bit of rain, so the low spots were quite muddy, but there were boards to walk on. In fact, the mud was so deep under the boards that my dog was practically swimming in the mud up to her back (she loved it!).
It only takes about 10-15 minutes to get to Lake Agnes. A perfect spot for my dog to wash off! There are some nice views through the trees of this wild, undeveloped lake crowned with maple and conifer. The trail continues around the lake and it’s not long before you get to the White Sky Rock Spur Trail. If you continue on the SHT, you will come to the Lake Agnes campsite where there is pretty good lake access for swimming.
Spur Trail to White Sky Rock
This trail ultimately takes you up to an awesome overlook of Caribou Lake! But it’s not especially easy to get there from here. The trail takes you up and down some rocky outcroppings and tree roots that can be difficult to maneuver depending your your physical ability. If you are fairly able-bodied, you won’t have a problem, but if have shaky feet you might want to bypass this section. It is a really interesting part of the trail and I definitely recommend it if you are up for it.
Just when you’re wondering if you’re almost there, there is a sign for a second spur trail, straight up to White Sky Rock. This section is straight up the hill to the top. Here is where you can rest and take in the gorgeous view of Caribou Lake!
Short Cut to White Sky Rock
There is a much shorter way to get to White Sky Rock. Park at the Caribou Lake Public Access (about a mile past County Rd. 39). There is a marked SHT parking lot there. Hike across the Caribou Trail to the White Sky Rock spur trail which will take you short and sweet, straight up to the top. But, you will miss Lake Agnes and the interesting and more difficult part of the aforementioned spur trail. Doing this would take only about 30 minutes to hike up, enjoy the view, and hike down.
Or, you could park two cars – one at the County 39 trail head so you can hike past Lake Agnes. And park the other car at the Caribou Lake Public Access, so you can hike down the short trail (and not backtrack past Lake Agnes), right to your car.
The Lutsen area is popular in the fall because of the beautiful inland maples. Maples are among the first trees to peak. So to catch these brilliant reds and oranges, take this hike mid-September. This was on September 19.
While you’re in the area…
Stop by Caribou Cream Maple Syrup. You’ll pass it on the way to the trail!
Visit any of the popular attractions in Lutsen including the Alpine Slide, Gondola, and Superior National Golf Course.