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U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) formally reinstates two federal mineral leases

Twin Metals Minnesota issued the following statement in response to today’s action by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to formally reinstate two federal mineral leases held by the company in Northeast Minnesota.
The formal reinstatement of the leases follows a U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) legal opinion issued in December 2017 affirming Twin Metals’ right to renewal of the leases, which the company and its predecessors have held in good standing for more than 50 years. The December 2017 legal opinion negated actions taken in 2016 by the BLM and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) to deny the renewal of the two Twin Metals leases. Twin Metals’ federal leases are important components of the underground mine project proposal the company is preparing for submittal to state and federal agencies for extensive review through an Environmental Impact Statement.



Due to safety concerns, Superior National Forest managers are temporarily closing sections of Forest Roads in St. Louis, Lake, and Cook Counties, in northeast Minnesota.

Some Forest Roads have become covered with a thick layer of ice that has created an extreme hazard for traffic in those areas. Current specific closures include:

A five-mile portion of the Tomahawk Road (Forest Road 377) on the Kawishiwi Ranger District, temporarily closed from Highway 1, east to Forest Road 381 in Lake County, MN.

A twelve-mile section of The Grade Road (Forest Road 170) on the Tofte Ranger District temporarily closed between the Sawbill Trail and Wanless in Cook and Lake Counties, MN.

These temporary closures apply to any vehicles driven by the general public, including snowmobiles, dogsleds, and all-terrain vehicles. These restrictions went into effect Tuesday, November 28, 2017 and will continue until further notice.


Lake Country Power advising members to seek safety and warmth during outage

The conditions following the late Thursday night snowstorm is making it difficult for linemen, bucket trucks and heavy equipment to access poles, wires and downed trees. As a result, Lake Country Power is advising any members still without power by 8:00 p.m. tonight to seek alternatives to stay warm.

Line crews have restored power to more than 4,000 members since 11:00 p.m. Thursday night. Crews worked all night and day on Friday in an effort to restore electric service. While crews are making progress, they will need a mandatory rest period from 8:00 p.m. this evening until 6:00 a.m. Saturday morning.

Most outages are located in the Mountain Iron service area, including Lake Vermilion, Ely, Orr and Crane Lake. Other outages also affected members in the Grand Rapids and Kettle River service areas as well. As snow and ice melts from the lines, more outages are anticipated throughout the co-op’s service area.


Construction Begins on Hwy. 2 in Lake County

Knife River Materials will be resurfacing five miles of Lake County Hwy. 2 between Greenwood Lake and Sand Lake beginning Monday, August 14th. Flagging delays are expected for the next two to three weeks between the hours of sunrise to sunset, Mondays through Saturdays. This federally-supported investment will improve the ride quality of this connection between Ely and Two Harbors. Please direct any questions to the Lake County Highway Department at 218-834-8380.


Wolftrack Sled Dog Race cancelled

Race director Ellen Cashman stated that last night the board of the Wolftrack Classic Sled Dog Race reviewed course information and cancelled the race planned for this weekend due to unsafe conditions.


Legislators back Twin Metals; Over 60 lawmakers voice outrage, want federal edict reversed

by Tom Coombe -


Is it a Giant Crow? Batman? What?

The lifting kite over the ice at Shagawa Lake, just north of Grand Ely Lodge attracted passesrby on Pioneer Road as it lifted the object below into the sky,
Fom the popular Ely lodge restaurant and bar, that which was being lifted was even more spectacular - a fifty foot inflatedWhale! Photo by Vosburgh Custom Cabins. The likes of which Ely had never seen. Flying whale Initiated by GEL guests. Second photo byJay Rock of Shoreline Realty, thanks for sharing the photos.


The story of Burt Keeeley, Ely’s century-old and largely unknown link to the major leagues

(Editor’s Note: This is part one of a two-part series written by Anthony Bush, a baseball historian).
by Anthony Bush
Ely, Minnesota, is an eternal frontier town. Established in the late 1880s as a mining outpost in the remote wilderness of the Vermilion Iron Range about 20 miles south of the Canadian border, Ely was a typical wild-west town. It is also an unlikely baseball town.
Legend has it that professional-baseball-player-turned-evangelist Billy Sunday visited on occasion and is credited with the comment, “The only difference between Ely and hell is there’s a railroad out of Ely.”
Sunday would preach one day and then play in the baseball games between Ely and nearby-logging-town Winton the next.


Lake County Highway Department service continues after fire

December 15, 2016 – Lake County Highway Department has made arrangements to continue service to the public following last night’s structure fire at its facility.
The use of garage, shop and office space are being provided at other Lake County facilities, the City of Two Harbors, Silver Creek township, and local businesses while the fire investigation and recovery efforts continue. Phone service will be forwarded to the temporary locations.
Additional plow trucks, loaders and graders are already in place with help from St. Louis County, City of Silver Bay, and Ziegler, until Lake County equipment can be assessed and cleaned. Some equipment and structures will need to be replaced.
Cost of the fire is still undetermined.


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