Grand Portage National Monument is a United States National Monument located on the north shore of Lake Superior in northeastern Minnesota that preserves a vital center of fur trade activity and Anishinaabeg Ojibwe heritage.The Grand Portage is an 8.5-mile (13.7 km) (2720 rod) footpath which bypasses a set of waterfalls and rapids on the last 20 miles (32 km) of the Pigeon River before it flows into Lake Superior. This path is part of the historic trade route of the French-Canadian Voyageurs and Coureur des bois between their wintering grounds and their depots to the east.
The portage trail exists in much the same location and condition as in historic times. Visitors can hike 8.5 miles (13.7 km) from Lake Superior to the Pigeon River.Volunteers and park staff at the monument dress in period attire. They staff the Kitchen, Canoe Warehouse and Great Hall in and around the Stockade, and explain and interpret what life was like at the trading fort at the turn of the 18th century.
During the second weekend of August, the Grand Portage National Monument hosts a rendezvous re-enactment. At the same time, the Grand Portage Ojibwa Indian Reservation holds a pow wow, which attracts many Indians and visitors. The Rendezvous and Pow Wow coincide with the Perseid meteor shower.
Opened in 2007, the Grand Portage National Monument Heritage Center features exhibit galleries about Ojibwe culture and the fur trade, a bookstore, multi-media programs, park offices, archives and a classroom. The center is a collaboration between the National Park Service and the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. It overlooks the reconstructed fur trading post.