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“Can't wait to get back up there!”
Review of Cross River Lodge

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Cross River Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 4 September 2013

We had the best time...what a wonderful place. John and Rose are wonderful hosts. The cabins are clean and updated. The lodge is warm and inviting. The breakfasts were delicious and presented beautifully!
And the best part for me is that they are so dog friendly. We love bringing our dog with us and they made it so easy.
Gunflint Lake is a beautiful place...I was SO sad to leave this morning. We will absolutely go back.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Rollie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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74 - 80 of 152 reviews

Reviewed 18 August 2013

Seriously, Travelers- this is the ONLY place to go on the Gunflint Trail. If you want the serene and wild beauty of the Gunflint area with all the comforts of home, plus more you didn't even know you wanted, check out Cross River Lodge. We've lived in Minnesota for over 20 years, and spent loads of time on Lake Superior, and had always heard great things about this area. Last year, we attempted to book with the famous Gunflint Lodge and the owner was so rude and pompous to us there, we almost gave up on this area. That would have been a huge mistake, because The Gunflint Trail is pretty special. We saw the good reviews for Cross River, and after our first conversation with John, knew we had to try it out. We were not disappointed in any way, shape or form. Au contraire- Starting with John and Rose's laid-back, no pressure reservation policy, our relaxing trip started long before we ever headed north. Here's a few details:

Location: GORGEOUS serene placid lake, which is part of that fabulous chain; resort is off the main road, so kids and pets feel safe. The scent of white pines is like an air freshener from the moment you step out of your vehicle. The water is on a rock ledge, so bringing the boat down was simple as can be. There is plenty of room to keep a boat. The resort is small, so we rented 3 of the cabins for our family and friend group, and they were all close enough to each other and the lodge, so no one felt isolated.

Cabins: As I said, we rented 3/6 of them (plus there are lodge rooms) and each was beautifully and rustically appointed, but very updated. Lots of log pine furniture, wood floors, ceilings, walls and VERY comfortable beds, chairs and couches. We slept like logs. Everything in the cabins was top shelf. We even had Wolfgang Puck cookware! The stove was nicer than ours at home.

Lodge: We spent as much time in the beautiful lodge, as our cabins. Why? Because not only is it relaxing and inviting, with every comfort of home, including a powder room and big homey tables for game playing, but John and Rose are so welcoming, yet unobtrusive, that why wouldn't you want to hang out there? They have (as mentioned in other reviews) a breakfast rivaling any great restaurant, with omelets plumped with vegetables and meat, which would feed a family of four, and french toast slathered with fresh fruit and REAL, yes, real maple syrup. Every afternoon, after kayaking or fishing, the scent of fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies drew us in and the lemonade pitcher and ice bucket were always full in time for games at the big tables. Our dog loved keeping a sharp eye out for the chipmunks which visited the feeders on the porch. John and Rose supply bird and chipmunk food for guests to feed and watch the little visitors. In the evening, they would fog the area to help keep the mosquitoes at bay.

Animals: Well, as I mentioned, we brought our dog, who was treated like a member of the family. He felt welcomed and relaxed and I think he enjoyed the vacation as much as anyone. John and Rose supplied sheets to put on furniture if your dog is used to getting on it (which ours isn't, but how thoughtful- instead of having hard rules, they want everyone, even pets, to feel at home here!) There are chipmunks, tiny squirrels, snowshoe hares and plenty of birds to help you remember where you are. The loons sang to us often, and several families of ducks swam along the shore. On our hikes and adventures, we also enjoyed seeing a fox, a river otter, and a few bears feasting on berries. One night, we heard the even mournful howl of wolves in the distance. Amazing!

Extras: I can't even begin to mention them all for fear of forgetting some! One thing I have to say is that our boat stabilizer bar broke on the trip up. John fixed it for us! He is super helpful in whatever way a guest needs. He and Rose truly go out of their way to keep guests happy. They knew all of our names, our kids' names and every guest at the resort. This is a sincere aspect of their hospitality. They are exactly the kind of people who should run a resort! Ok, here's a start on the extras...bags of ice right at the resort, whenever you want them, BBQ gas grills hardwired at every cabin, ceiling fans in all rooms, lamps every where you need one (don't you hate trying to read when there's not a light!?), kayaks (really fun!!!!), canoes, life vests, gas for your boat at a reduced rate, pontoon rental, TWO garbage cans for each cabin, which are emptied at 7 each night to keep away bears (isn't that smart!?), complimentary museum passes for a rainy day, really good books, magazines and games in cabins and at the lodge, a wee bit of wifi, just to allow you to check emails or messages, but not so much as to distract you from why you came!

Cons: no place is perfect, right? Well, Cross River Lodge comes close. Here are a few less than perfect parts: 1) lots of mosquitoes. (not a neglectful thing- it's just what it is up here in August!) Bring bug spray. 2) You are really away from everything- it's about an hour to Grand Marais, so bring whatever you need the first time! (although the resort does have many conveniences you might need, including a first aid kit) 3) Hard to find fish in August. We hear the spring is great for lake trout, but not until the last day of our vacation, did our seasoned fishermen find some fish to cook. They were delicious northern I must say- such clean water.

Overall A++++

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank shinyobjects63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2013

My wife and I literally stumbled across Cross River Lodge while traveling the Gun Flint Trail. What a wonderful find! John and Rose are superb hosts and all around really nice people. The lodge is beautifully decorated. The views are gorgeous. The rates are very reasonable. The breakfast is outstanding. There is great hiking and kayaking. I wish I had brought my fishing gear. We were able to stay only three nights but we could easily spend a week or two soaking up the quiet beauty of northern Minnesota. I would give Cross River Lodge six stars, not five, if I could. We highly recommend.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank oldruggedx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2013

Two years ago we visited Cross River Lodge for the first time on a hunch that it could be a nice quiet getaway. That doesn't even begin to describe it! John and Rose are now our friends as well as our gracious hosts. They create a welcoming, relaxing community for every guest, whether you are staying for a few days or a few weeks. If you feel like joining them in the screen porch for lively conversation after dinner, they'll be great company, or if you prefer to stay in your own cabin, that's fine too. Either way, you'll be part of their lodge family and they'll make sure you enjoy yourself and your north woods experience. You can see thousands of stars overhead at night here. Amazing. Two weeks ago we returned for another visit, and it was like coming home.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank S-B B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2013

This was a return trip for us. John has stepped up breakfast with excellent omelets or french toast, along with the rest of their very good continental fair.
John & Rose treat you like best friends, and the rest of the staff are helpful & friendly.
The cabins are cozy, clean, and have a wondwrful view of the Gunflint. The lodge is perfectly located away from the roads, but not too far off. Day trips to Grand Marais or the museum near Trails End are easy to do. There is plenty of hiking. The kayaking is the best!
This is an excellent place to relax and enjoy your vacation.

Room Tip: We have stayed in Bear Paw & Wolf's Den and enjoyed them both. They have a good kitchen, ple...
  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Kirk R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2013

We enjoyed our visit so much at Cross Rivers. You could not ask for a better place to stay. The room was very comfortable. The breakfast was so good and so filling we did not need to stop for lunch. What great place to stay - you can go canoeing, kayaking, boating, fishing, hiking or just relaxing with a beautiful view. John and Rose certainly make sure you have everything you need to make your vacation great. I have never felt more welcome or comfortable at a place. Thanks John and Rose!!

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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Thank JLM5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2013 via mobile

Back again after a year and am still convinced this is the best place to stay in the north woods. The made to order breakfast was a nice touch this year and I must say the seafood omlet was the best breakfast I'd had in quite a while. John has really mastered the art of breakfast making. What really makes the trip for our family is the friendly faces we see each time up. Such wonderful people run this establishment as well as guests who stay here. I think it is extremely rare to form the kind of friendships we have made at Cross River over the last 2 years considering we are only here for a week at a time. This bond is certainly one of many reasons we will be back again next year and for years to come.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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2  Thank AdamGauslow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cross River Lodge

Address: 196 N Gunflint Lk, Grand Marais, MN 55604-2082 (Formerly Moosehorn Lodge)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Minnesota > Grand Marais
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 32 Speciality Lodging in Grand Marais
Price Range: £85 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
John and Rose want to welcome you to our wilderness paradise and find some relaxation. We can point you towards whatever it is you are looking to do...or maybe it's a new adventure for your exploration. Sudbury Meteorite Ejecta field very near lodge. No liquor license but BYOB and it is welcome in the lodge. Come sit by our historic fireplace or on our screened porch and relax...We have suites above the lodge and cabins available. We have a "no surprise" pricing policy. Our price plus sales and lodging tax is the price. NO RESORT OR HIDDEN FEES! Hope to see you soon! ... more   less 

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