Lake Superior’s North Shore Witch Tree

Lake Superior Witch Tree

“Manido Gizhigans” to the Ojibwe people, the Spirit Little Cedar Tree (known as the “Witch Tree”) has been keeping a keen eye over the shores of Lake Superior in Grand Portage for an estimated 300-400 years.  CBS Minnesota did a “Finding Minnesota” story on the Witch Tree. Travis Novitsky was interviewed for the story and said “You’ve got this tree that’s growing out of the rock for at least 400 or 500 years. And just to stand in the presence of something that’s living, that’s that old, to me is mind-boggling.” Sorry for the brief commercial before the video starts.

See the full story by clicking here.

Copyright for the above photo belongs to Travis Novitsky.


Mic Hardly

about 8 years ago

Using witch tree makes no sense. Whats the story behind calling it the witch tree? Why is it called the witch tree? Also, considering the tree is on Ojibwe land it only seems appropriate to call it by it's true name, Manido Gizhigans.

Cory Fechner

about 8 years ago

I agree. I have always referred to it as the "Spirit Tree," but apparently "Witch Tree" is what others call it. I like the "Spirit Tree" name best.


about 8 years ago

Jeepers Mic, breathe!  No no, thanks for shaming him out on this while educating the public even though he was maybe only trying to tie some halloween fun into it.  What if some natives just told you that, and Manido Gizhigans is actually the word for when your shit gets so tight you can bounce a dime off it?  Noertheinus Clampititus as it known in scholarly circles.  Wait, aren't there some white pines in the 400-500 year range in Lester or Congdong you could drive 300 miles less to marvel at?

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