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The Wonders of Water in Cuyuna


True North Basecamp is known for a lot of great amenities and features, including the access to downtown Crosby businesses, direct access to the mountain bike trails and unique cabin designs with views Armour Number Two Mine Lake.

What also makes True North Basecamp unique? “Water.”

Armour Number Two Mine 1914

In 1918, the peak years of ore mining, the Cuyuna region had 27 mines operating. Since most of these mines were open pit, by the time the last mine closed in 1984 they began to fill with water creating a chain of crystal clear lakes, some as deep as 550 feet. The other unique feature of the mine lakes is how quiet they are since no speed boats are allowed. This is one reason why paddle boarding, kayaking and scuba diving are so popular on the mine lakes.

At True North Basecamp, our guests have direct access to one of the mine pit lakes; Armour #2 Mine Lake. With this direct access, no need to get into your car and drive to find the water. We even have a flat sandy beach to launch your paddle board or kayak. The beauty of the mine pit lakes is the proximity to one another; often a short portage is only needed to jump on to another mine pit lake. For example, guests at True North Basecamp can launch onto Armour #2 Mine Lake and take a short portage on the other side of the lake (crossing over the paved bike path) and access Portsmouth Mine Lake. From Portsmouth Mine Lake, another short portage provides access to Pennington Mike Lake or Mahnomen Mine Lake #1. Access the DNR trail map to plot out your next paddle board or kayak adventure: If you want to rent a Paddle Board or Kayak and have it delivered to your campsite or cabin, contact Cuyuna Outfitters.


Trout fishing on the Mine Lakes? Yes indeed! The DNR has been stocking the mine pit lakes for decades with Lake Trout. Most of the trout going into the 11 mine lakes in the Cuyuna Range are of two strains of rainbow trout: Kanloops and Arlee. Other trout species can include brook trout and brown trout. Before casting a line, go to the DNR website for fishing regulations: The Cuyuna Lakes Trails Association also has a short article on trout fishing at this link.

Drinking Water

That red dirt that Cuyuna enthusiasts rave about looks great on bike tires and outdoor equipment, but not so much in the drinking water. That red dirt everyone rides and walks on is full of iron, which means the ground water is full of that same red iron. When True North Basecamp was developed, we knew conditioned drinking would be important for our guests. That is why we invested in directional drilling from our property to the City of Crosby’s municipal water lines. This means our guests access clear drinking water that has been treated to remove the iron. So go ahead and fill up your water bottles and waters bags at True North Basecamp before heading out to enjoy the trails.

#Cuyuna #Minnesota #water #trout

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