Lutsen is a ski resort – the biggest alpine ski area in the Midwest, in fact. So it bustles in winter when skiers and snowboarders pile in for the 95 runs on four mountains.
In summer, visitors come for the aerial gondola (round trip adult/child $20/12) to the top of Moose Mountain. The red cars glide at treetop level into the valley and over the Poplar River before reaching the mountain top 1000ft later. Gape at the view from the chalet and hike the paths. The Superior Hiking Trail cuts through and you can take it plus a spur for the 4.5-mile trek back down the mountain.
Kids go crazy for the alpine slide (per person $12) on Eagle Mountain; it's accessed by chairlift. The resort also arranges family-friendly canoe trips in voyageur-style vessels (per person $15; times vary) on the Poplar River.