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Greenwood Fire Road Closure – UPDATE

As of 8am on Friday, September 10, 2021, the upper section of Hwy 2 will reopen. Check-point passes will no longer be needed to drive on Hwy 2, however, they will still be needed to drive on the closed section on Hwy 1 (between the Hwy 1 and Hwy 2 intersection and Lankinen Rd).

Please drive with caution and be aware that there are still fire crews working along Hwy 2.

Greenwood Forest Fire in Lake County

The Greenwood Forest Fire was detected on August 15 near Greenwood Lake in north-central Lake County and rapidly expanded due to drought conditions, high winds, and other factors.

DO NOT attempt access property near the Greenwood forest fire, please respect road closures and keep out of the evacuation areas. No aerial activity, including operation of drones, is allowed; severe penalties exist for those caught operating or flying drones near the Greenwood forest fire.

The following roads are closed until further notice due to the fire:

As of 8am on Friday, September 10, 2021, the upper section of Hwy 2 will reopen. Check-point passes will no longer be needed to drive on Hwy 2, however, they will still be needed to drive on the closed section on Hwy 1 (between the Hwy 1 and Hwy 2 intersection and Lankinen Rd).

Please drive with caution and be aware that there are still fire crews working along Hwy 2.

For latest information, please visit:

InciWeb Incident Information:
Superior National Forest/BWCAW Closures:
Lake County Emergency Alerts:

To view a map with the most recent closures and evacuation information, please click here.

The Lake County Parcel Atlas map has also been updated with fire-related information include the fire’s extent and road closures.

Minnesota Class IV Burning Restrictions

August 9, 2021

Contacts: Allissa Reynolds, acting wildfire prevention supervisor, 763-284-7213

Additional burning restrictions take effect Tuesday in Cook and Lake counties

To help ensure public safety and protect natural resources, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is activating additional burning restrictions for areas within state jurisdiction in Cook and Lake counties, beginning 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, August 10. Under the additional restrictions, all campfires and recreational fires are banned and the use of welding devices and other torches is prohibited when in proximity to combustible vegetation (unless special permission is granted). While the DNR’s restrictions do not control tribal lands, the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa has restricted burning on its lands.

Under these additional restrictions, the campfire and recreational fire ban in Cook and Lake counties now includes all public and private land. In the backcountry, and at campsites, only gas or propane camp stoves are allowed. Gas and charcoal grills are allowed at occupied homes, cabins and resorts.  Charcoal and gas fires must be in devices designed for grilling.

All previously issued burning restrictions also remain in place for Cook and Lake counties, including:

  • No fireworks may be ignited on any public or private land outside city limits. Check with your local community for any additional restrictions.
  • The state will not issue burning permits for brush or yard waste. Open burning permits are restricted. Check the statewide fire danger and burning restrictions webpage for more information.

Restrictions on open burning and campfires remain in place for more than twenty other counties in central and northern Minnesota. Some of these restrictions apply to all non-tribal lands, while others are specific to DNR-managed lands.  Details are available on the DNR’s wildfire information page.

Allissa Reynolds, DNR acting wildfire prevention supervisor, says these additional burning restrictions are warranted in the Arrowhead Region due to the combination of the high risk of wildfire and landscape features that can make suppressing wildfires there extremely challenging. “This year, we’ve seen wildfires starting from campfires, as well as all types of outdoor activities, which is uncommon and dangerous,” Reynolds said, “Campfire bans on public and private lands are rare and reserved for times of intense wildfire risk, like we are experiencing now. We are implementing these restrictions to protect life and property, and following consultation with our local, tribal, and federal partners.”

Check the DNR statewide fire danger and burning restrictions map before any outdoor activity or before heading to your cabin or campsite. You can make a difference – keep safety at top of mind. People who spot a wildfire should call 911.

Visit the DNR wildland fire information webpage for more information on current restrictions.

Lake County Lost and Found

The following items have been received by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office as lost, abandoned or safe keeping property.  If you believe any items listed may be your property, you must contact the Lake County Sheriff’s Office at (218) 834-8386 by August 1, 2021 to identify and establish proof of ownership. 

  • Gas Moped
  • Trailer
  • Gas Generator
  • Kayak
  • Motorcycle

County Forest Road Closures

Due to spring thaw, some Lake County-managed forest roads were not firm enough to support vehicle traffic. All county forest roads are now open. Please check this page for a list of these roads and any further updates on their status. Thank you for your cooperation.

Property Taxes Due May 15

Lake County has a drop-box available in front of the Law Enforcement Center Building at 601 3rd Ave.  There will be a sign on the drop box indicating that property tax payments are being accepted.

Taxpayers can now view or print their current or delinquent tax statements whenever they desire using

Taxes can be paid by mail, using the drop box or online.

Appointments can be made for in-person payment.  Please call (218) 834-8315 to schedule a time.

Please see the Auditor’s office webpage for details.

Lake County to Restrict Vehicle Weights on The Garden Lake Bridge

The Lake County Highway Department and Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) will post reduced legal weight limits over the Garden Lake Bridge on Fernberg Road (CSAH 18), beginning no later than March 1, 2021. The maximum vehicle weight will be set at 32 tons for truck/trailer combinations and 20 tons for single unit trucks.

The decision is a result of an updated load rating analysis, which is completed regularly to address changes in standards and regulations across the state’s roadway network. The reduced legal weight posting is necessary for the bridge to remain in service for the remainder of its planned life span. The bridge remains safe for use. Questions can be directed to the Lake County Highway Department at (218) 834-8380. 

Lake County ADA Transition Plan for Pedestrian Infrastructure

The Lake County ADA Transition Plan draft is available for public review and comment through March 2, 2021.  The draft plan can be viewed online at  Hard copies are also available for review at the Lake County Highway Department, Court House, or Health and Human Services Center. 

The Lake County ADA Transition Plan includes an evaluation of the county’s pedestrian infrastructure located in the public roadway right-of-way.  Infrastructure was evaluated for compliance with the guidelines of the Public Rights of Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG), as adopted by MnDOT.  The plan also includes schedule goals and the framework for how non-compliant facilities will be corrected to PROWAG standards. 

Alternate accommodations to review and comment on the draft plan will be made available upon request.  Request for accommodation can be made to Darbie Eschenbacher by calling 218-510-0649 or by email at

Comments on the plan can be emailed to the Lake County Highway Engineer, or mailed/delivered to the Lake County Highway Department at the address above.  Comments will be reviewed by the Highway Engineer and included in the final plan.  The final plan is scheduled to be reviewed by the County Board in March, 2021 for consideration and adoption.

County Small Business and Nonprofit Organization Economic Relief Grant Program

The Lake County Board of Commissioners approved another round of Economic Grant Relief to distribute $256,250 of state funding to help small business and nonprofit organizations.

Tell us how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted your business or nonprofit organization.

Your organization is invited to submit a grant application; download the document below to learn more about grant eligibility, procedures and guidelines.  

2021 Recycling Center Schedule

In 2021, the Lake County Recycling Center is open Monday-Friday, 7:30AM to 5:30PM and on Saturday between 8:00AM and 12:00PM.

The Recycling Center will be closed all Sundays and the following days:

  • January 1st, 2nd
  • February 15th
  • March 8th
  • April 2nd, 3rd
  • May 31st
  • July 5th
  • July 10th
  • September 6th
  • November 15th
  • November 25th, 26th, 27th
  • December 24th, 25th

2021 Recycling Center Schedule

Do Not Plow Snow Onto County Roads

Do not deposit snow on public roads! This includes pushing snow across county roads!

According to the Lake County Highway Department, depositing snow in any fashion onto a County Road is illegal and punishable as a misdemeanor under Minnesota Statute 160.27 and various local ordinances which prohibit plowing, shoveling, blowing or placing snow onto public roadways.  Any violation will be forwarded to the Sheriff’s Department in the interest of public safety.

Lake County Highway Department also cautions that the act of placing snow onto a public roadway can subject a person to a civil liability if a road hazard, such as a slippery area, frozen rut or bump, occurs and causes a traffic accident.  This civil liability can extend to both the property owner and the person who actually placed the snow onto the roadway.  You also may be liable for damage to County snowplow equipment.

Lake County Highway Department asks all citizens to obey these rules which are designed to keep Minnesota’s 131,100 miles of streets, roads and highways safe during winter months.  Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

Jason DiPiazza
Lake County Highway Engineer

CARES Act Charitable Nonprofit Grants

Lake County has received $1.28 million to support the community during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as small businesses, charitable nonprofits, congregate care facilities, health services, local government expenses, and individuals in need.

“Our highest priority is to send the bulk of these funds to our small businesses and non-profits who are hardest hit financially during this crisis, along with our most vulnerable citizens and those who care for them,” according to County Administrator Matt Huddleston. “We’re pleased that up to $850,000 is available directly to our business community.”

Learn more from the documents below or at the Lake County Chamber of Commerce’s website (updated 10/22).

CARES Act Lake County Small Business Relief Fund

Lake County’s Board of Commissioners has partnered with the Lake County Chamber of Commerce to create a Small Business Relief Fund, utilizing funds from Lake County’s CARES Act allotment.

Small businesses play a crucial role in each Lake County community, and this fund will provide monetary relief to help ease the burden of hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible small businesses may apply for up to $10,000 in grant funds, to be used for the reimbursement of eligible expenses, as defined below.

Guidelines and application are available on Lake County Chamber of Commerce’s website

(Article originally from Lake County Chamber of Commerce).

Press Release – Caribou River Fatality

At approximately 2132 hours on September 7, 2020, Lake County Dispatch received a report of 29 year old man from Rochester who had fallen into the Caribou River and was unresponsive.  It was reported that Daniel Allman had been hiking with a friend when he fell approximately 100 feet from a cliff, landing in the water below.  Allman was removed from the water by his friend.  Lifesaving attempts were performed by the friend, Lake County Rescue Squad and Lake County Ambulance Service.  Allman was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Responding agencies were Lake County Rescue Squad, Lake County Ambulance Service, Cook County Sheriff’s Office and Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

Press Release – Plane Crash on White Iron Lake

8/21/2020 – 2:24PM – The pilot, and only occupant, of the plane has been identified as Dr. Kyle Edlund, of Woodbury Dental Care.  Dr. Edlund was flying a Lance Air 4-seater, single engine N997S. 

Correction: Dr. Edlund was last at his hotel in Ely at 10:15 pm and flew out soon after.

8/21/2020 – 9:00AM – At approximately 2308 hours on 08/20/2020, Lake County Dispatch received a call reporting a possible plane crash on White Iron Lake.  The pilot, and only occupant, left the Ely Airport shortly after 9:00 pm and ended up crashing into White Iron Lake.  The plane was heading towards the Grand Marais/Cook County Airport from the Ely Airport.

Responders found the victim, a 58-year old male from Woodbury, MN, died on impact.

Responding to the scene were the Lake County Sheriff’s Office, St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office, Lake County Rescue Squad, Morse-Fall Lake Fire Department and Ely Ambulance.

This accident is still under investigation.

Lake County Supports Governor’s Mask Mandate

“Lake County is pleased to see the state take leadership on this issue,” said Matthew Huddleston, Lake County Administrator. “Masks are an important way to help slow the spread of the Coronavirus and to protect ourselves, families, neighbors and businesses. Businesses need to stay open and we want to see all residents stay healthy.”

Mask Up Minnesota to help slow the spread of COVID-19

Social Distancing at Work

While things are reopening and folks are getting back to work, it is still important that mitigation measures are being followed to continue to stop the spread of COVID-19. The risk is still very real. To protect yourself and others, take time with your coworkers to make sure you can make distancing work in your workplace. Stay safe, stay healthy!

Visit Lake County’s Coronavirus Hub for more information.

Social distance at work, including attending meetings virtually if possible, allowing six feet of separation between individuals while at work, and maintaining that six-foot spacing during in-person meetings. Visit for more information.