SPLIT ROCK LIGHTHOUSE STATE PARK MODERATE DIFFICULT
Frank Day was once a partner in a real estate firm that owned Day Hill and some of the surrounding land. He loved a woman with whom he was engaged to be married. In anticipation of the blessed event and the happy life to follow, Frank began constructing their dream house. But, it was not to be. She called off the marriage, leaving Frank with a heavy heart that must have made his climbs of Day Hill afterwards all the more difficult.
Beyond Day Hill, the route crosses U.S. Highway 61 and ascends into the hills above Lake Superior along Split Rock Creek. A bench has been perfectly positioned part way up the trail. It provides an opportunity to rest and enjoy the sights and sounds of a waterfall on the creek.
At the intersection with the Superior Hiking Trail you come to the Merrill Grade. The Merrill and Ring Company conducted logging operations in the Split Rock River area from 1899-1906. The forest at that time was mainly Norway spruce and white pine. Today white birch is the dominant species. The Merrill Grade is the route of the railroad line on which locomotives brought logs to the mouth of the Split Rock River. While the hike continues to the left at this intersection, if you hike a short distance on the trail to the right, you will see the remains of old railroad ties, now covered in moss.
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