Voyageurs National Park is a mosaic of land and water, a place of interconnected lakes that flow west into the Rainy River, and eventually north as part of the arctic watershed of Hudson Bay. It is a place of transition, between upland and aquatic ecosystems, southern boreal and northern hardwoods forest types, and both wild and developed areas.
The foundation of the park's landscape was sculpted by a series of glaciers that have scoured and carved the area over hundreds of thousands of years. The most recent period of glaciation ended just over 11,000 years ago, exposing ancient Precambrian rocks that formed over two billion years ago. The forests that now drape the upland portions of the park exist on a thin layer of soil that has formed in the comparitively short period of time since the last glacier receded.
People entered this region following the retreat of the glaciers. Early Native Americans were the first to make use of the abundant resources the lakes and forests provided, followed by Europeans and other native groups drawn to the area during the fur trade period of the late 1700's and early 1800's. Mining, commercial fishing, logging and recreational use brought more people to the region in the years that followed, evidence of which may be found in the park today.
We welcome you to learn more about the natural and cultural history of Voyageurs National Park, whether you visit by land or boat or from the comfort of your home computer.