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Isle Royale NP: Huginnin Cove Loop

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Trail Details

Western Upper Peninsula
N 47° 56' 5.28"
W 089° 10' 32.88"
9.4 miles
Trail Type
Foot path
Ridges and Huginnin Cove
Nearest City or Town
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Windigo at the west end of the Island does not feature the number of short trails found in the vicinity of Rock Harbor, but there are still opportunities for overnight excursions and pleasant day trips. The most popular side trail is Huginnin Cove Loop, a 9.4-mile round trip out of Windigo. The trail loops through the northwest corner of the park and passes through the secluded and scenic Huginnin Cove, a good place to watch a sunset.
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The loop to Huginnin Cove is an excellent overnight trip that requires 2-4 hours of hiking each way. There are a few ridges to climb, mostly along the West Huginnin Cove Trail, but overall this route can be enjoyed by most park visitors - especially those looking for an opportunity to view a moose.

The loop winds past and through a number of swamps, wetlands, and small ponds, all excellent places to encounter the large mammal. The best bet in seeing one is to camp at the cove and that evening return to a high perch overlooking one of the swamps passed through during the day.

The East Huginnin Cove Trail departs from the Minong Ridge Trail and within 0.3 mile comes to the posted Wendigo Mines, which operated here from 1890 to 1892. A short spur leads to what remains today; one wall of an old cabin that’s still standing and an assortment of metal work, mostly railroad lines. You depart the ruins, climb steadily along an old railroad bed and a mile from the East Huginnin Cove Trail junction arrive at the log remains of a second cabin related to mining activity.
Amenities & Services
Difficulty - Moderate
Foot Path
Trail Guide

The Huginnin Cove Loop is covered  with detailed maps in Isle Royale National Park: Foot Trails & Water Routes by Jim DuFresne. To order the 192-page guide to the wilderness island, Click Here.


Shower tokens, clean towel, and a bar of soap can be purchased at the camp store at Windigo.

It\'s also possible to book a cabin at Windigo for lodging. The Windigo Cabins feature table and chairs, a sofa, two bunk beds and electrical outlets but no indoor plumping. For reservations, contact the park concessionaire, Forever Resorts (866-644-2003 or 906-337-4993 in summer; www.rockharborlodge.com).

Hours & Fees

Isle Royale National Park opens April 16 and closes on Nov. 1 to all visitors for the winter.  The park has a entrance fee of $7 per person per day or an annual pass for $60. You can pay the entrance fee once you arrive at the park or in advance at at pay.gov  and avoid congestion and long waits on the island. All park visitors who plan to camp overnight at campgrounds or cross-country sites are required to obtain a camping permit. This permit can be obtained free of charge at the visitor center at Windigo or Rock Harbor when you arrive or on board Ranger III on the way to the Island.


To reach Windigo and return to Rock Harbor, book passage on the Voyageur II. Alternatively, you can book a flight to Windigo with Royale Air Service, which flies out of the Houghton County Memorial Airport. You can also arrange an inter-island flight between Windigo and Rock Harbor.


Call the Isle Royale National Park headquarters in Houghton (906-482-0984) or check the Isle Royale National Park website (www.nps.gov/isro).

Geo-referenced maps from MichiganTrailMaps.com range from $1.99 to $2.99 each.

Download the Avenza app from the App Store or Google Play

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