Voyageurs National Park's Visitor Destinations
The history of Kettle Falls is as colorful as the red roof on the hotel. Constructed by timber cruiser Ed Rose and reputedly financed by Madame Nellie Bly, the Kettle Falls Hotel has accommodated and entertained travelers since 1913. Robert Williams bought the hotel in 1918 for $1,000 and four barrels of whiskey. From its somewhat scandalous past, grew a long tradition of hearty home cooking and hospitality served by the Williams family. This historic hotel was renovated by the National Park Service in 1987 so you, too, can enjoy a hearty meal, relax on the veranda, or spend the night. More information about the Kettle Falls Hotel and dam, including reports and historical documents, is available on the Kettle Falls page of our website.
Ellsworth Rock Gardens
An unexpected site greets visitors on the north shore of Kabetogama Lake. Between 1944 and 1965, Chicago building contractor Jack Ellsworth created a personal grotto as an expression of his attachment for the lake country. Floral remnants, rock statuary and creative use of natural rock features still provoke feelings of wonder for visitors to the gardens. Enjoy the dramatic view of Kabetogama Lake from the apex of the gardens. In-depth information on the history and significance of the gardens is available on the Ellsworth Rock Gardens page.
Little American Island
Gold fever ran rampant following the discovery of gold on Rainy Lake in July of 1893. Prospectors, intent on striking it rich, hastily filed claims to prospects scattered throughout Rainy Lake. The feverish excitement over gold was centered on Little American, the only mine that actively produced ore. A 1/4 mile trail and wayside tell the story of the gold rush.
Did You Know?
Voyageurs National Park is a great place to snowshoe in the winter. Bring your own or borrow a pair from the Rainy Lake Visitor Center for free!