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beatuplund

Road construction on Hwy 2 ??

11 posts in this topic

Anybody know if 2 is open north of Two Harbors? All summer there's been a detour and the MNDOT site doesn't give any updates on it. Any other problem areas to be aware of around Isabella? Thanks!

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It is still closed. You have to cut over to Hwy 44 (by Hugo's). I drove it last week to Biwabak and it only took me an hour from Two Harbors. It is not that much of an inconvenience.

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Can you tell me the name of the road that cuts over from RT 2 to RT 44 ? Cant find anything on the Atlas that mentions Hugos. Is that some sort of business ? Am I better off driving on RT 1 to Ely or would the detour still be faster ?

thanks

Dave

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Hopefully someone else will chime in, but I would still take 2 to Ely even with the detour. If I remember correctly it takes you about 10 miles west, then 10 miles back to hwy 2. Something like that.

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Hwy 14, if you are traveling on Hwy. 2 it is the only left you can take once you hit the road closed signs. It turns into 55 just before it runs into 44. Take a right on 44 and that will run you into 16/15. Left on 16 takes you to Hwy 53 and the range, right on 15 takes you back to hwy 2. It is a bit out of the way, but there iss not a lot of traffic so it goes pretty fast. Hugos is a bar/gas station, one of the only landmarks that you can ask about in that area and almost everyone will know what you are talking about. grin.gif

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Are all the detour turns marked with signs ? How much time would I shave off the trip taking RT 2 even with the detour compared to RT 1 ? I will be heading up later in week...

Dave

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Either route probably will take you about the same amonut of time right now, give or take 10 or 15 minutes.

Hwy. 1 is a twisty highway its whole length, and taking Hwy. 2 out of T.H. is generally a way to cut off 45 minutes or so from the eastern Duluth-to-Ely route, but with the detour on 2 it'll probably be about even now, with the Hwy. 2 route maybe being just a bit faster yet.

The detour that had been farther up Hwy. 1 (from Isabella to the Tomahawk Road) most of the summer has been discontinued, and there's now about a five-mile stretch of Hwy. 1 about 25-30 miles short of Ely with road construction and a couple possible short delays with flag-people occasionally stopping/slowing traffic — but no more detour.

If you're coming up I-35 toward Duluth and time rather than scenery is your prime concern, it's faster to get off I-35 onto Hwy. 33 in Cloquet and take 33 to where it intersects Hwy. 53 north of Duluth, then continuing on Hwy. 53 until you're a few miles north of Virginia, where you'll take Hwy. 169 through Tower and into Ely. That's a much faster route. Of course, scenery-wise the Hwy. 1 route is a lot nicer.

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The detour is very well marked, but like ST said, if time is of concern, the Hwy 33 route will save a lot of it.

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Thanks for the info. Any good eats taking the 169 route ?

Dave

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Nothing very special along that route on the highway. Mostly a mix of fast-food joints along the highway in Virginia and a few roadside cafe/bars scattered from Cotton to Tower. If you like it meaty and fried, you're in heaven. If you like something else, uh, well, no dice. One exception is the Sawmill on the highway right in Virginia, which has a fairly full menu. No atmosphere, though.

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Or a guy could peel off at Eveleth and head into Gilbert to The Whistling Bird for some more exotic fare. Then head over through Biwabik and pick up the road to Embarrass, Babbit and then to Ely. (I think its 135 to 21)

This time of year the colors atop the Divide between Aurora and Embarrass are good. Its a pretty drive and only adds about 5 or 10 minutes. Just make sure you observe the speed limits going through the small towns!!

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