Point Narrows Resort
Lake Shore, Minnesota (Nisswa area)

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Activities & Eating Out

Eating Out

The Nisswa Chamber of Commerce has a list of restaurants in Nisswa and beyond, ranging from fast food to upscale.  A website address is given for each restaurant.  The Chamber's website restaurant list is http://business.nisswa.com/list/category/restaurants-84.

Some restaurants can be reached by either road or water, from Point Narrows Resort.  Going through Spider, Roy, and Nisswa Lakes to the site of the pedestrian tunnel to the City of Nisswa, then walking through the tunnel, under Highway 371, is one way to access restaurants by water.

Three restaurants are found on the water north of Gull Lake.  See the map on left.  All three of the businesses shown have restaurants.  To find the restaurants on Gull Lake, use Google maps to Google "gull lake mn restaurants".  Restaurants on other lakes also can be found using this format.

Of course, restaurants can be found just by noting ones that you see along the highway, or by cruising around the shopping malls in Nisswa or other nearby cities.


Point Narrows Resort

Point Narrows Resort has a shuffleboard court and basketball hoop, along with needed equipment at no charge.  For children, there is a playground which includes swings and a treeless tree house.  The swimming area includes a safe sandy beach and diving raft.

The 8/10 mile loop, formed by the narrow roads in and out of the resort, makes for a pleasant forested walk, with occasional sightings of deer or black squirrels.

A reserved boat slip, on a nearby dock, is included with each rental unit.  Also included is a Lund 14 foot fishing boat, for those who wish to use it.  Click here and scroll down to see rental rates for a 9 horsepower motor, a pontoon boat, extended docking, and life jackets (each can be rented for a week or a month).  A boat launching ramp is on the premises, as well as a gasoline pump in the channel (pump your own gas and pay at the Office).

Because of Point Narrows Resort's protected location, the wind does not prevent boats from getting on the water.  The  resort has two fish cleaning houses, which are centrally located. 


Gull Lake and the Gull Lake Chain stand out as fishing lakes inn Minnesota.  The lakes contain some of the best pan fish, bass, crappie, walleye, and northern pike fishing grounds in Minnesota.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has lake information on their website, for 4,500 Minnesota lakes.  The easiest way to gain access to information for specific lakes is to Google "MN DNR Lake Finder."  Click on "Lake Finder: Minnesota DNR" to bring up the page where you enter the name of the lake that you're interested in. (This works for lakes which have been mapped by DNR).  Click on the name of the lake for information about the lake, including fish species found in the lake (many more species than given above) and a depth map of the lake. 

The lake's depth map, with contour lines, will be on a map with other lakes.  Click on "big map" under the lower right-hand corner of the small map which comes up.  Click on the cursor (now appearing as a hand) and click and hold, to move the map around.  Click on the plus sign (upper left-hand corner of the map) to zoom in on the map and the minus sign to zoom out.

Paper lake maps are available form the Minnesota Bookstore, 660 Olive St., St. Paul, MN 55155.  (651) 297-3000 or 1(800) 657-3757.

The Nisswa Chamber of Commerce has tips and information about fishing, at www.nisswa.com/pages/fishing!


Boating opportunities abound on the Gull Lake chain of seven lakes (or more lakes, depending on who is doing the counting and what they consider a lake to be).

For boating around the Gull Lake chain, see the map made by the Gull Lake Chain Association:
http://www.gullchainoflakesassociation.org/buoys.htm.  This website address brings up the Buoy System page, which describes the navigational and no-wake buoys installed by the Gull Chain of Lakes Association.  Navigational rules are on the back of the map.  Click on the small map on that page to see a larger copy.  Paper copies of the map are available (11"x17").  The closest place to obtain paper copies of the map is at the Narrows Public Access Landing (this is the narrows between Gull Lake and the Gull Lake Channel, which connects with Upper Gull Lake).  From Upper Roy Lake Road, go south on Highway 371, turn right at the second stoplight, and continue to the point where Lost Lake Road is on the right and the public landing is on the left, immediately before the bridge across the narrows.  If you come to Zorbaz on the right, you have gone too far.  The maps are in
a wooden box on a post, to the right of the launching ramp when facing the water.

No Wake buoys and signs mean that boaters should slow down to 5mph or to the minimum speed needed to steer the boat.  This prevents erosion on the nearby lake shores, which happens when the boat's wake slams against the shore.  Also, the channels are shallow, so going slowly means a smooth ride through the channels, without the motor's propeller hitting bottom if the water level is a little low.


The Gull Lake chain is an ideal location for both beginner and advanced paddlers.  The smaller, quieter lakes in the northern part of the chain, where Point Narrows is located, are less heavily used by boaters and can provide a relaxing paddle.  Gull Lake, the big lake, is almost 15 miles long, better suited for sea kayaks than for recreational kayaks or canoes, because sea kayaks can cover more territory in the same amount of time.  When Gull Lake is busy with motorboats, it's best for paddling craft to travel not far from shore.  The same is true for any motorboat-infested lake.

Paddlers can go beyond the Gull chain by paddling to the Cullen Lake chain, through a channel from Nisswa Lake.  This channel goes underneath  Highway 371, through a wetland, then underneath Old Highway 371 (Lower Cullen Road) and underneath the Paul Bunyan Trail, to Lower Cullen Lake of the Cullen chain of lakes.  The channel can be seen from Highway 371 (see satellite image).  The channel is better suited for kayaks than for canoes, since there is a fairly fast current going upstream to Lower Cullen Lake. 

Going further southeast along the shore of Nisswa Lake, from the channel to Lower Cullen Lake, will take you to the Nisswa landing.  Here you will see the pedestrian tunnel to the city of Nisswa.  The tunnel goes under Highway 371 and comes out in the heart of Nisswa.

Other paddling possibilities exist within easy driving distance of Point Narrows Resort.  Maps of rivers are available (although "rivers" don't seem to exist anymore - now they are called "water trails."  The terms are used interchangeably here ).  Paper maps are available at the Brainerd Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Office, for the following rivers which go through or near Crow Wing County:  The Mississippi River from Itasca State Park to the Minnesota/Iowa border (this includes several maps), Pine River, and Crow Wing River (not to be confused with the Crow River).  The Brainerd DNR Office is located at 1601 Minnesota Drive in Brainerd.  Consult the map in the Brainerd phone book for the exact location.  Look for it just off of Highland Scenic Drive, south of College Road and just west of the Mississippi River.  The phone number is 218 833-8710 (Parks and Trails Department).

Any of the DNR maps for Minnesota rivers can be ordered by emailing info.dnr@state.mn.us or calling 1-888-646-6367.  These are large, folding maps.  They show river miles by the use of red dots.  Mileage is given every five or ten miles.  A list in one corner of the map denotes points of interest along the way.

River information for paddlers is found at www.state.mn.us/watertrails. Clicking on "Maps" leads to copies of the big DNR river maps, reduced to fit two pages, so that the maps are difficult to read, although they give an overall picture of the river.  Clicking on "Interactive Maps" leads to maps which give information about the rivers.  On the Interactive Maps page, a Zoom feature, on the left side of the page, lets the reader click on the map that they are interested in, which brings the interactive map into focus (for most rivers).  It shows a lot of detail, including roads and landmarks, and the map can be moved around to access other areas of the map.  In the upper left-hand corner of the Interactive Maps home page,  click on "how to use" to learn how to navigate through the interactive maps.  (To get the Crow Wing river map into focus, type "brainerd" into the space labeled "Place" at the top right of the page.  Click on "Go" and four choices come up.  Click on either "map24k" or "mcd" to bring the map into focus).

The Crow Wing River is one of the very best paddling rivers in Minnesota.  Including the eleven lakes which it flows through at its beginning, it is 119 miles long and travels through five counties.  Much of it is wild and scenic.  The river itself is rarely deeper than three feet and offers easy paddling.  The river ends where it joins the Mississippi about ten miles south of Brainerd, across the river from Crow Wing State Park.  There are outfitters on the river, if you need a canoe.  See "Outfitters" on the descriptive page which comes up when clicking on the map for the Crow Wing Water Trail.

A fairly short and easy paddling trip (about ten miles) on the Mississippi River is from Boom Park in Brainerd to Crow Wing State Park, 10 miles south.  See the Brainerd phone book map for the exact location of Boom Park (or Boom Lake), which is on the east side of the river, south of College Drive.  This trip is part of the Mississippi section map which covers the route from "Brainerd to Little Falls."  The entire route for this section is thirty miles long.  Caution is given because of swift currents, which are south of Crow Wing State Park. 

The Mississippi River above Brainerd is tamer and provides many possibilities for trips of various lengths.  The hazard to avoid is a large, dangerous dam where the river runs through the northeast part of Brainerd.  The dam created Rice Lake, the takeout point being Lum Park at the south end of Rice Lake.  The map section is "Palisade to Brainerd", which covers about 85 miles of the river.  Many possibilities exist for paddling trips of various lengths, in this quiet section of the river.

Water level is important for river paddling.  DNR's home page for paddling has a link to water levels in the text and also under "Water Trail Gauges" which is listed under "River Levels" at the bottom of the page. The website for any river map also has a link to the water level information for that river.  The link goes to a page showing water levels for the state's rivers, indicated by color-coded dots.  A "Zoom" feature on the right-hand side of the page lets you see water levels for a specific river.  The categories indicated by the color-coded dots are: Very High, High, Medium, Low, Scrapable (this means that the canoe scrapes the bottom of the river in places), Generally Canoeable All Year, and Not Interpreted.

Water levels are generally higher in the spring and after a lot of rain.  It is best to avoid paddling on Very High and many High rivers.  The current may be very swift, making it difficult to steer, leaving not enough room to duck while going under low bridges, and difficult or impossible to get free if getting caught on a downed tree (people drown from not being able to get free of these "strainers.")  Check with DNR or local people, if unsure if a river is safe.

The State Water Trails home page, on the DNR website, has a link to "Safety" listed under "Trip Planning" at the bottom of the page.  It includes wearing your life jacket, among other safe practices. 

Non-motorized craft, such as canoes and kayaks, have the right-of-way over motorized craft, unless the non-motorized craft is overtaking or passing.  This is taken to mean that motorized crafts are supposed to slow down when coming near non-motorized craft.  This does not always happen.  If a motorboat passes close to your canoe or kayak at a high speed, creating a wake which looks like it could swamp your craft, the safe thing to do is to turn your watercraft so that it is facing the wake, rather than being parallel with the wake.  After turning toward the wake, just hang on while your watercraft bounces up and down, until the wake has dissipated.

Area Activities & Events

Paul Bunyan State Trail

In the summer, the Paul Bunyan Trail is popular with bicyclers, in-line skaters, and hikers.  The Trail is 115 miles long, stretching from Crow Wing State Park (ten miles south of Brainerd, Minnesota) to Lake Bemidji State Park (just north of Bemidji, Minnesota).  It is the longest continuous paved trail in the country, as well as one of the premier trails in Minnesota and the country.

Nisswa is an ideal place to get onto the Paul Bunyan Trail.  Parking is available.  Nisswa has clean public restrooms, which are in the same building as the Nisswa Chamber of Commerce, located at 25532 South Main Street, Nisswa, MN 56468-0185.  It is on the east side of the main street through Nisswa, south of Park St.

Official information about the Paul Bunyan Trail is available from two websites: 

http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_trails/paul_bunyan/index.html  This Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website describes the Trail, gives its history, has a virtual tour, and shows the parking areas.  It gives a link to the DNR map of the Trail.  Paper copies of the map can be obtained from the Brainerd DNR Office, located at 1601 Minnesota Drive in Brainerd.  Consult the map in the Brainerd phone book for the exact location.  Look for it off of Highland Scenic Drive, south of College Road and just west of the Mississippi River.  The phone number for maps is 218 833-8710 (Parks and Trails Department).  Paper maps can also be obtained at the Northland Arboretum in Baxter (the starting point for many trips) as well at some cities along the Trail which have facilities for Trail users.

www.paulbunyantrail.com  In addition to history of the Trail and videos, this website gives information about highlights and events along the Trail, as well as press releases about the Trail.  It has a link to the DNR map, description of segments of the Trail, links to seven segment maps and to individual city maps and descriptions.  It has links to websites of other rail-to-trail trails which connect, or plan to connect, with the Paul Bunyan Trail. 


Although our lakes area is known regionally and nationally for our championship golf courses, including one designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr., many golfers have found that there is something for everyone, from championship courses to budget courses. 

To gain an overall picture of golfing in the area, go to "Golfing the Brainerd Lakes: The Best Bets" and "Golfing the Brainerd Lakes."

"Golfing the Brainerd Lakes: The Best Bets" gives ideas for where to golf.  "Golfing the Brainerd Lakes" gives an overview of golf courses in the lakes area, with a description of each, cost information (which may be a little out of date), and links to websites.  The overview includes Championship courses (seven courses), Traditional courses (seven), Bargain courses (two), and Nine-hole courses (seven).

(To find the above website pages manually, go to www.midwesternweekend.com, click on "Outdoors Recreation" on the left side of the page, then scroll down to "Golfing the Brainerd Lakes: The Best Bets," and "Golfing the Brainerd Lakes.")

Nisswa Area Events

The City of Nisswa is a hub of activity all through the summer, with activities for children and adults.  Some activities, such as Farmers' Market,  Bluegrass Concerts, and Bingo, turn up time and again through the summer.  Others, such as the Wooden Boat Show* in the area, are one-time events during the summer.  Turtle Races are held every Wednesday in Nisswa at 1 p.m. during most of the summer.  There is also a Rubber Duckie Race during the summer.

A variety of activities take place in and around Nisswa.  For information about these activities, click on  www.nisswa.com and put the cursor over "EVENTS," which is near the right end of the row near the top of the page.  A menu of three choices drops down:

Double click on "EVENTS" to get a chronological list of events.  Clicking on an event brings up more information about it.
Double click on "EVENTS CALENDAR" to see the events arranged on their dates.  Clicking on an event brings up more information about it.
Double click on "TURTLE RACES" to get information and a video about the Turtle Races.

Nisswa-Stamman, an annual Scandinavian Folk Music Festival, will take place June 10th and 11th in Nisswa. Click on http://www.nisswastamman.org/ for more information.

With a variety of at least 60 shops, Nisswa is a delight for people who like to shop.  For a list of 36 shops out of about 60 in Nisswa, click here.  There are many categories of shops, including gift shops, clothing shops, and sporting goods/outfitting.

*The Wooden Boat Show normally occurs once a year.  In 2015, there will be two shows; the International Wooden Boat Show will be held at Bar Harbor Restaurant on September 25 and 26, in addition to the annual local show.

Miscellaneous Activities

Some area activities in the area are further away than Nisswa.  Some of these are strictly warm weather activities.  Some of the websites may not come up during off-season.

          www.piratescove.net   Pirates Cove is about 8 miles from Point Narrows Resort and two blocks south of
          Brainerd International Raceway  on Highway 371.

          www.wildwedge.com  Wildwedge has a walk-through "Mystery Maze," as well as Mini-Golf.  It is 9 miles
          from Point Narrows Resort, in Pequot Lakes.           

Horseback riding
www.pineriverstable.com  The Pine River Stable has a petting zoo as well as horseback riding.  It is about 20
miles from Point Narrows Resort.

Water Boat Cruises
www.destinycruises/publiccruises.html  Cruises are on Gull Lake and include brunch, lunch, dinner, and
sunset/moonlight cruises.
These Destiny Cruises go out of Ernie's on Gull Lake, about 13 miles from Point Narrows Resort.

http://breezybelle.com/breezy-belle-paddle-wheel-boat  These are two-hour cruises which leave from Breezy
Point  Resort on Pelican Lake, 11 miles from Point Narrows Resort.

Brainerd International Raceway (BIR)
www.brainerdraceway.com  Car races of all sorts are found here, 11 miles from Point Narrows.

www.northernlightscasino.com Northern Lights Casino is near Walker, MN, 42 miles from Point Narrows Resort.

Google "grand casino mille lacs" to bring up the Mille Lacs Grand Casino, which is about 48 miles from Point Narrows, on Lake Mille Lacs, near Onamia.   

Taking It Easy    - always an option!



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