Border Lakes Area
If you like the best in Minnesota scenery and boating, it doesn’t get much better than the cruise from the west end of Rainy Lake to the south end of Crane Lake. There is short $20 truck portage about halfway, at the Kettle Falls Hotel, but in just a few minutes you can jump from Rainy Lake to Namakan Lake – or vice versa – and be on your way another thirty to forty miles by water.
Because of Voyageurs National Park plopped into the middle of these lakes, there will be very limited waterfront real estate on the American side of Namakan Lake or Sandpoint Lake, but more extensive options over the Canadian boundary. Lake Kabetogama does have some private property, and a number of resorts, that were carved out of the park when it was created, so the south shore of that lake will have a variety of lake cabins and homes available at times. Also, Ash River, extending out of the southeast end of Lake Kabetogama, has quite a few waterfront cabins and several resorts with easy access into the big lake.
Finally, the largest of these border lakes – Rainy Lake – is the furthest west before entering the Rainy River on its journey to Lake of the Woods. On Rainy you will find the most lakefront homes and cabins on this chain, with the city of International Falls serving as the main business hub of the northern reaches of the state. Also, the waterfront community of Ranier boasts an ideal setting where the lake and river connect. At times, lake homes can found along the shore here as well.