One of the most awe-inspiring things do in Two Harbors is to watch the ore boats in Agate Bay. Many of these vessels are over 1,000 feet long and it’s amazing to witness them maneuver in and out of our small port with ease. Stood upright from end to end, the biggest ships that we see in our port would stand almost as tall as the Chrysler Building! A popular spot to watch them is from the end of the breakwall, where they come so close that it feels like you can reach out and touch them!
You will mostly see ‘lakers’ (ships that travel within the Great Lakes) in Agate Bay, with the occasional ‘salty’ (ocean going vessel). Ships arrive in Two Harbors to load with iron ore, which is the primary ingredient for making steel. The ore is delivered to port by rail from mines in northern Minnesota; the vessels load up and transport the ore to steel mills, such as in Northwest Indiana, Detroit, Cleveland, and Ontario.
It’s amazing to think that this town has a port that influences manufacturing and trade all over the world. Take time to check it out next time you are in Two Harbors! If you can’t make it soon, watch the live streams on our website so you will never miss another vessel landing.
Find daily shipping schedules at the RJ Houle Information Center or keep tabs on anticipated arrivals and departures on harborlookout.com!
Find live vessel tracking: