Looking for wolves and bears in northern MinnesotaIs there a bear and wolf sanctuary near Bemidji, Minn.? Ely springs to mind, but I'm not sure. I have company coming in from the West Coast on May 15, and they've expressed interest in this. Is this a day trip from Bemidji or an overnight? Are motels available in Ely? Thanks. - George, Bemidji, Minn.
You may be thinking of the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary near Orr, which is just off U.S. 53 on the way to Voyageurs National Park and not far off your route from Bemidji to Ely.
It's a great place to see bears, but it doesn't open until Memorial Day. For more, see Beguiled by bears.
Ely is a great place to see bears at the North American Bear Center. For more, see Ely and the three bears. You can see wolves at the International Wolf Center on the other side of town.
You could do it in a day — it probably would take 2½ to 3 hours each way — but it would be fun to stay overnight, and you should get good hotel rates in mid-May.
For more about sightseeing in Ely, see Dreaming of Ely.