Cross River Falls


May 2017

State: Minnesota

Location: Cross River Falls Wayside Park in Schroeder

Height: ?

Crest: ?

Water Source: Cross River

Waypoint: 47.5442N 90.8962W

Summary: An easy to see roadside falls. Stop by and see this one while visiting the many waterfalls and other sights on Minnesota's North Shore.

Cross River Falls is on Minnesota's North Shore just south (west) of Temperance River State Park. The waterfalls go right under the bridge on Highway 61 over the Cross River. The upper part of the falls is easily seen from the bridge. There is parking on the south west side of the river and you can walk across the bridge to look at the falls.

If you cross over to the southside of the road there is a stairway that takes you to a view area about halfway down the falls. The first time I visited the falls in August 2003 I was able to actually get under the bridge to look at the falls. I think they have added higher fences since then, because in May 2017 there really was not much to see, nor any safe way to get closer.

It is possible to get to the bottom to see the full falls. On the north east side of the bridge there is an abandoned parking area. From here you can climb down into the gorge. I would suggest looking for the trails that head away from the road, instead of the ones that head straight down into the gorge. The less direct trail makes a much easier descent, and ends opposite the base of the falls.

It was raining the day I made it down to the base of the falls, which made it hard to get good photos.

A spur of the Superior Hiking Trail can be accessed about a quarter mile from the falls. According to this DNR map there is another waterfall on the cross river about 2 miles upstream, but I cannot find any other evidence of that.

At the mouth of the river you will find Father Baraga's Cross, for which the river is named. Baraga was caught in a storm on Lake Superior and providentially blown over the sandbar and into the quiet mouth of the Cross River. The erected a wooden cross at the site in thanksgiving. The wooden cross was later replaced by the granite one that stands there now.

[North Shore] Nearby Falls

The Temperance River Gorge is just a couple of miles to the north. Beyond that are Cascade Falls, Devil's Kettle Falls, the High Falls of the Pigeon River, and a bunch of others. Caribou Falls is 9 miles to the south. High Falls of the Baptism River, the Upper Falls of the Brule River, Gooseberry Falls, and many more are beyond that.

Other Websites

A photo of the full falls.

Photo Gallery


View from bridge

View from side

View from below

August 2003

August 2003, Under the Bridge

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Last Modified: Sunday, 25-Jun-2017 07:50:28 MDT.

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