Tofte Township is a township located in Cook County, Minnesota, United States. The township was first settled by Finnish immigrants in the late 1800s and was named after a Finnish-American farmer named Victor Tofte.
In the early years, Tofte Township was primarily a logging community with timber being transported to sawmills in nearby towns. The first sawmill was built in Tofte in 1892, and by the early 1900s, the community had grown to include a post office, general store, hotel, and other businesses.
In the 1920s, the North Shore of Lake Superior became a popular tourist destination, and Tofte Township saw a shift in its economy from logging to tourism. The highway that runs through Tofte, now known as State Highway 61, was completed in the 1920s, making it easier for tourists to reach the area.
Today, Tofte Township is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, with activities such as hiking, fishing, camping, and skiing. The town is also home to the North Shore Commercial Fishing Museum, which showcases the history of commercial fishing on Lake Superior.
Top Tourist Attractions
- Temperance River State Park - This beautiful state park features cascading waterfalls, rushing rapids, and rocky cliffs. The park offers hiking trails, fishing, and camping.
- Superior National Forest - Tofte Township is surrounded by the Superior National Forest, which offers endless opportunities for outdoor recreation. Visitors can hike, bike, fish, camp, and ski in the forest.
- North Shore Commercial Fishing Museum - This museum showcases the history of commercial fishing on Lake Superior. Visitors can learn about the techniques, equipment, and traditions of commercial fishing on the North Shore.
- Sawbill Lake - Sawbill Lake is a popular destination for canoeing and camping. Visitors can rent canoes and explore the lake's many islands and bays.
- Carlton Peak - Carlton Peak is a popular hiking destination with stunning views of Lake Superior and the surrounding forest. The trail to the summit is challenging but rewarding.
- Oberg Mountain - This hiking trail offers breathtaking views of Lake Superior and the surrounding forest. In the fall, the trail is especially beautiful as the leaves change colors.
- Lutsen Mountains - The Lutsen Mountains ski resort offers skiing and snowboarding in the winter, and hiking and mountain biking in the summer. The resort also has a gondola ride that offers stunning views of the surrounding area.
Tofte Township has a humid continental climate, with cold winters and mild summers. The average temperature in January, the coldest month, is around 12°F (-11°C), while the average temperature in July, the warmest month, is around 66°F (19°C). The area receives an average of 82 inches (208 cm) of snowfall per year, which makes it a popular destination for winter sports enthusiasts.
The area also experiences frequent precipitation throughout the year, with an average of 30 inches (76 cm) of rainfall annually. The summer months tend to be the wettest, with frequent thunderstorms and occasional heavy rainfall. The fall months are known for their beautiful foliage, as the leaves on the trees turn brilliant shades of red, orange, and yellow.
Due to its location on the North Shore of Lake Superior, Tofte Township is also known for its cool, refreshing breezes that blow in off the lake. These breezes help to moderate the temperatures in the summer, making it a comfortable place to be even on hot days. Overall, the climate in Tofte Township is ideal for outdoor recreation, with plenty of opportunities to enjoy the area's natural beauty year-round.
The township covers an area of approximately 75 square miles (194 square kilometers), with a population of around 200 people.
The topography of Tofte Township is characterized by rugged terrain, dense forests, and many lakes and rivers. The Sawtooth Mountains, a range of rugged peaks that rise up to over 1,000 feet (305 meters), run through the township. These mountains offer many opportunities for outdoor recreation, including hiking, camping, and skiing.
Tofte Township is also home to many lakes and rivers, including Lake Superior, the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area. Other notable bodies of water in the area include Sawbill Lake, Temperance River, and the Cross River.
The area is also home to a diverse array of wildlife, including black bears, wolves, moose, and bald eagles. Tofte Township is a popular destination for hunters and anglers, as well as birdwatchers and other nature enthusiasts. Overall, Tofte Township is a beautiful area with stunning natural scenery and abundant recreational opportunities.