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“Canoer Cabin New, but lack of bathroom made us check out early”

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Gunflint Lodge & Outfitters
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 July 2014

We are typically hotel goers, but were attracted to the numerous naturalist activities and availability of the canoes and kayaks at anytime so we decided to try a Canoer Cabin since it was so much less than the other cabins. It was just built in 2012 and still had that "fresh wood" smell. Very clean, beds were great, got several mosquitoes in the upper bunks, bottom bunk sleepers were fine. The power was out when we got there so we drove to the launch very close for the porta-poddy. The power was restored within an hour but they never got their WIFI. Unfortunately my husband had some last minute real estate offer to deal with that required Internet, so we drive to the Trail Center in the evening and morning (15 miles one way) to get Internet, therefore we ate at the Trail Center so we don't have any experience with the food. We planned 3 nights but checked out after the first night. The power and Internet issues were out of their hands. The place was very clean. We were uncomfortable walking to the toilet at night, especially since other guests reported seeing a small black bear in the area every day while they were there. It was just too much for us. Others would probably be ok. I felt the cabin was everything they advertised it to be. It just wasn't for us. We did use the kayaks and a canoe and the dock hand was very helpful and friendly. Bonnie was great to email us the activity schedule before our visit.

Room Tip: We were impressed with the naturalist activities and use of the kayaks and canoes anytime for no add...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Michelle A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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126 - 132 of 262 reviews

Reviewed 22 June 2014

We arrived in the evening and after dodging road work which no-one has any control over, checked into our cottage. It was smaller than we expected, but that was fine. What puzzled us was that the light was on and the doors unlocked, but whatever. We settled in and were disappointed to find that despite the DVD player and CD player, there were no DVD's or cd's and there was no radio or TV. Okay, there were games and cards and we brought books. Things then started to deteriorate. We were opening the windows and noticed there were dead bugs stuck to the curtains and conwebs in the corners. Burns on the rug, the formica was raising up from the counter, there were only two forks, the plates in the cupboard were dirty. the old hot water tank was in with the new hot water tank. The shower looked lovely, but we didn't stay long enough to find out and we checked out the next morning. In between was a nightmare; the bed was the noisiest bed we have ever slept in and we travel a lot. We couldn't see the lake except as a blur through the trees, the mosquitos described as mild or few, were awful. As we were exhausted we went to bed and upon turning down the bed, discovered a very long dark hair - I and my husband both have short hair. I woke up at 3:11 AM scratching from bites I got while sleeping. In the morning I said to my husband what's on your hip? It was a woodtick! ANd it was fresh because it wasn't burrowed in and he didn't have it the night before. We then discovered why - the window screen which was on the inside, had a gap almost 1/4" whch doesn't sound like much but was enough to let bugs in! The lodge staff zeroed out our charges and we are now trying to get our money back from Travel Zoo. The end of the bug bite saga was not good. I do not know what bit me, but on Thursday in Thief River Falls I ended up at Sanford Urgent Care, where I received three seperate prescriptions for antihistamines, antibiotics and steroids to get rid of the welts and oozing bites on my arms and foot. Never, never, never again. The staff were friendly but never again.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank gaynor h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GunflintGuy, Owner at Gunflint Lodge & Outfitters, responded to this reviewResponded 25 June 2014

We feel very badly that these guests had a bad experience with us, and we are sorry to have disappointed them.
Responding to their concerns: They did not give us a chance to solve any of their problems, or to upgrade them to something more to their liking.
When guests arrive late, after we close, we always leave the light on and the door unlocked to their cabin so as to make it easy for them to get settled in. As noted in their information booklet in the cabin, we have lots of DVDs and CDs at the lodge (free for their use). All they have to do it stop at the lodge and select what they would like. In their comment card they said they found one bug on the curtain, and either our housekeepers missed it or it flew in while they were moving in. There are a couple of small burn marks in front of the fireplace where sparks landed, but they are very minor. The unit they checked into was set for 2 people, so we stock our silverware for 2 people since it is an efficiency kitchen. We have two hot water heaters in the unit to be sure they always have plenty of hot water and one of them was replaced recently, but I am not sure what we did wrong. They are in a utility closet with a door and not visible unless you go looking.
If there was a long dark hair in the bed, apparently our housekeeper missed it when she put fresh linen on the bed, and we take full responsibility for that. The bed was fairly new and in very good shape and we are still looking into what was noisy about it. As we understand it, wood ticks do not live in cabins, but are brought in on the clothing of guests.
The cabin is set back from the lake by the normal 100', which is code. There are some evergreen trees between the cabin and the lake, so the view is not wide open. For guest enjoyment we have two nice Adirondack chairs right down on the waters edge in front of the cabin.
Regarding her black fly bites, all we can do is speculate, since we are not doctors. When a person scratches the bites aggressively they swell up a bit and our body emits a bit of liquid to seal them up. It sound like she was sensitive to the bites and she got more of a reaction than most people.
We are very sorry they had a disappointing visit with us and we would have solved all their concerns if they had just given us a chance.

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Reviewed 18 June 2014 via mobile

We originally planned a camping trip to the Boundary Waters Wilderness area and purchased a special package through the Gunflint Outfitters. We arrived to some nasty weather.., cold, wet and very windy. We are not experienced rugged outdoorsmen and I think Bonnie Schudy, recognized this and worked out a plan wherein we lodged in a cabin and were furnished a canoe and transport to nearby lakes. Our package deal price was fully applied and the trip worked out great. Clean cabin, clean lodge and restaurant, friendly and helpful staff, what else could you ask for. We will be back!

Stayed: June 2014
2  Thank Jimy32301
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2014

Rented the Pow Wow Lodge for a family reunion. It is the owners previous home and it includes all the amenities, including large kitchen, satellite TV and WiFi- which is always sporadic in this region. The Pow Wow is spacious:5 bedrooms/ 3 Baths which are spread across one floor and is perfect for a large group. Book your pontoon rental in advance (before you arrive) and if the kids (or you) intend to sign up for a daily activity please do so as soon as you arrive. The space is often limited. The Kerfoots and their staff are welcoming and enthusiastic about this beautiful place along the Gunflint. The restaurant has excellent food - Walleye is great! Leave your city time schedule behind and ease into a north woods experience. Only regret was the time went by too fast. I was so busy relaxing and taking in the beauty of just being there that I didn't get to explore the surrounding area as much as I had hoped. Guess I'll do that next time. For summer visitors, bring your mosquito repellant. The little terrors aren't too bad around the lodge or on the water but any exploration in the woods requires DEET. Can't wait to return.

Room Tip: Look for size you need and lake view.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Patrice H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 June 2014 via mobile

My husband and I celebrated our anniversary here last weekend and couldn't have felt more welcomed in this cozy, family run resort. We stayed in cabin 20, which was absolutely perfect with a wood burning fireplace, jacuzzi shower and lakefront view. We were truly relaxed and "away from it all" with the gorgeous views of Gunflint lake. We did an hour long horseback ride, and while both of us were beginners, Molly and Elyssa couldn't have been better in teaching us how to properly handle our horses. The hiking was beyond beautiful and we would highly recommend a boat rental to fish the lake and to get to Bridal Falls to hike. The Sunday night BBQ is not to be missed with smoked chicken, ribs and salmon (not to mention the to die for homemade blueberry BBQ sauce)! Our cabin had a kitchenette but the lodge is also an awesome choice with fabulous chef options and a bar with great craft beer selections. We will most definitely be back, and recommending to our friends!

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Amandammeyer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 June 2014

We had a nice time despite our rainy, end-of-May weekend. Definitely a great Northwoods getaway. Our cabin w/2 BR was spacious, pleasant, clean, comfortable and secure. I was comfortable as mom and daughter guests. We made use of the kitchen, bringing groceries and only went to restaurant on Sunday for the all-can eat BBQ, which was delicious with great service. The kitchen had limited hot water, so we boiled for dish-washing, though I had plenty for a shower. I noticed this was a comment by some other readers. It didn't bother us. We wanted a camping experience without a tent, so boiling some water up is nothing to complain about. They had the fireplace stocked and ready to go, which we enjoyed on this still cool, rainy weekend. The resort is not meant to be the Ritz, but it is hardly rustic, and we were pleasantly surprised. The staff were all very friendly and casual, which we appreciate. The naturalist accommodated us for hiking after the original group canceled and we showed up, forgetting about the sign-up sheet. She was very friendly and informative. They offer a lot of activities, just make sure you ask about schedules, as not all activities in the web site are available the days you are staying and are subject to change, so be a bit flexible. Horseback-riding, we were told for example on the phone reservation, you'd want to see about scheduling a week in advance of your stay to make sure. We had decided not to do this, yet its a nice fyi to plan for. I had read Justine Kerfoot's book years ago, and this resort was on my list to get to, and I was pleased to have stayed while Bruce and Sue were still there to meet, as the lodge is up for sale. There is a lot of history in this resort, and you can see the years of development that are there. It is a family-run resort, so think family when you go! Grounds were well kept, nicely landscaped, boats, canoes, kayaks available for use of guests, and pet friendly. We definitely recommend and would return for more summer boating and the winter activities look fun too. Enjoy!

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Darlene P P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GunflintGuy, Owner at Gunflint Lodge & Outfitters, responded to this reviewResponded 10 June 2014

Thank you for your comments and I am glad to hear most things were to your liking. I have followed up on your comment about needing more hot water in the kitchen sink and have taken care of it, so it will not be an issue in the future.
I hope you can work Gunflint into your schedule again in the future.
Thanks, Bruce Kerfoot, your Gunflint Host

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Reviewed 30 May 2014

We didn't stay at Gunflint Lodge, but we enjoyed their horseback riding. Our lady guides were very informative and they know their job. They taught us how to rid, control and treat a horse. The price for an hour rid was very reasonable, considering that there is no other horse stables in the area. The weather was cooperating and trail was nice.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank ENoohi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gunflint Lodge & Outfitters

Address: 143 S Gunflint Lk, Grand Marais, MN 55604-3009
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Minnesota > Grand Marais
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Ski-In / Ski-Out Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 32 Speciality Lodging in Grand Marais
Price Range: £104 - £438 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Gunflint Lodge & Outfitters 3*
Number of rooms: 33
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
All-inclusive luxury cabins in the Minnesota Northwoods on the historic Gunflint Trail bordering the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Lakeside cabins with fireplaces accommodate 2-14 people and many have in-room saunas or spa pools. Activities include canoeing, hiking, fishing guides, guided Naturalist activities, swimming, horse back riding, full meal service, and the Towering Pines Canopy Tour. Winter activities include cross country skiing, dog sledding, snowmobiling, snow shoeing and ice fishing. Lakeside patio dining, full-service bar, and massage therapist are available. Featured in "1,000 Places to See Before You Die-U.S. & Canada." Always Pet Friendly. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gunflint Hotel Grand Marais

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