This photo needs editing.
Difficulty IV-V
Length 2.4 Miles
Gauge N/A
Flow Range
Reach Info Last Updated 06/28/2011 10:55 am

River Description

Access for this reach is by driving up "Seven Bridges Road," the beginning of the "Skyline Parkway." (This scenic drive around the hills overlooking Duluth, MN is highly recommended for boaters and non-boaters alike.) Put-in is above seventh bridge (actually, there is an eighth bridge one might use as put-in).

The first drop is a long, convoluted flume with great scenic rock outcroppings. Action greatly subsides for a ways below this. Numerous smaller ledges and drops ensue. A few will merit scouting, if nothing else than to reassure where you want to hit a boof or punch a hole.

The other large drop comes as you reach the upper limits of Lester Park. When you see a gazebo on the right and a footbridge spanning the river, get out to scout. The river narrows and twists approaching the bridge, then jumps down a steep slide into a deep pool. Some lesser rapids follow.

Take out before the confluence with the Lester River, and carry across the park to the parking area. Downstream of the confluence, the combined flow drops into some gnarly holes, twists and falls over a ledge, then flows (almost guaranteed past numerous people fishing, anytime the river is likely to be run) to meet Lake Superior.

Rapid Descriptions

Eighth Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 0
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

This is not on Seven Bridges Road (so doesn't really run counter to that name) but on East Skyline Parkway.

Seventh Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 0.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Sixth Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 0.5
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Fifth Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 0.7
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Fourth Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 0.9
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Third Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 1.25
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Second Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 1.6
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

First Bridge

Class - N/A Mile - 2
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USGS sampling site

Class - N/A Mile - 2.02
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

A USGS sampling site at this location lists drainage area of 16 square miles.

The Lester has 53 square miles at its sampling site downstream of the confluence with Amity, which makes it roughly 37 sq.mi. upstream of that confluence, or about 2.3 times as large a drainage as Amity.

Gazebo Falls

Class - N/A Mile - 2.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

You will spot a gazebo on the river-right shore and a pedestrian bridge over the creek which allows viewing of Gazebo Falls. While this is regularly and easily run, you should certainly have a look at it, either scouting on your shuttle up or getting out before running on your way down. (Hey, you'll want photos and/or video anyway!)


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Scott Pilate
6 years ago

Historic flooding has changed the nature of streams in Duluth to Silver Cliff. Old lines and splish-splash water shouldn't be taken for granted your first time down since the flood.

No Gage

Gage Descriptions

Visual. If the rapids and falls at the take-out park or at the put-in look runnable, go for it. The season is very brief. Catching this little gem at a runnable level is not easy.

Lake Superior Streams Organization maintains a gauge for this stream. Click here to see it, then click on "html" to get the real-time data for the last week.

Directions Description

The street names listed below may be the proper technical names, but the route is more commonly referred to as "Seven Bridges Road".

No Accident Reports



article main photo

Penobscot River Dams to be Removed!

Kevin Colburn

Atlantic Salmon and other imperiled fish species will soon have hundreds of additional miles of habitat. A recent decision between a power company, NGO's, tribes, and government agencies calls for the removal of two dams on Maine's Penobscot River and the bypassing of a third. American Whitewater applauds this huge win for rivers and is recruiting volunteers to assist with our work on the project. There is a public meeting December 2nd.

Matt Muir


Revision #Revision DateAuthorComment
1200331 06/28/11 Matt Muir Added gauge info.
1192303 04/20/07 n/a n/a