old61 Historic U.S. 61: Pine Bay Loop

Pine Bay Loop

Located: 1.7 miles south of Beaver Bay along the east side of State Hwy 61, in Beaver Bay Township, Lake County.

Historic Context: Part of the original North Shore Scenic Highway constructed in the 1920's.

Length: 0.40 miles

Constructed: 1924

Bypassed: 1996 (retired as U.S. 61 in 1990)

Also Part Of:

Status: Repaved, but otherwise intact.

Access: Public, two access points at either end on the east side of State Hwy 61. Also by bike via the Gitchi Gami Trail at each end.

More U.S. 61 Articles

North >> Wood Ridge Drive

South >> Gitchi Gami Trail at Chapin's Curve

Pine Bay Loop, a short local road south of Beaver Bay, was once part of the North Shore Scenic Drive. Built as part of the original highway in 1924, the road was finally bypassed by the construction of the current alignment in 1996. Aside from being a local drive, it is also the official route of the Gitchi Gami Trail.



Photos - taken in April, 2010.

Southbound on the Gitchi Gami Trail at the north entrance to Pine Bay Loop.

The north end of Pine Bay Loop. Note the new highway on the right, which was blasted through the rock. Also note the curve on the road in the foreground, which is not original, but was added in 1996 (the consistency of the pavement between the curve and old alignment shows that the road was repaved as part of the realignment project).

Southbound on Pine Bay Loop. At this point, the separation from the current highway provided by the trees makes it hard to tell that this section has been bypassed.

A northbound view at the north end of Pine Bay Loop.


  1. MNDOT. Construction Project Log: Control Section 3806
  2. Minnesota Highway Department. Construction Plan for Trunk Hwy No. 61-1 Between Little Marais and Two Harbors: S.P. 61=1-01, June, 1923.
  3. MNDOT. Right-of-Way Map: Beaver Bay to Chapin's Curve: 179-4D.

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