Lake Superior Nibi Walk

The Lake Superior Nibi Walk began and ended in Cedar, WI, traveling 1,129 miles over 34 days from August 1 – September 4, 2023. This walk was led by Sharon M. Day, Ojibwe and honors this great body of water and is a prayer for her health.

Part of the inspiration for this walk was to remember and honor Grandmother Josephine-ba Mandamin who led the first Nibi Walk around Lake Superior twenty years ago. We were very honored to be visited by her husband Andrew and sister Melvina.

Andrew Mandamin, husband of Josephine-ba Mandamin, carrying the staff. Sharon Manitowabi carries the water.
Melvina Flammand, sister of Josephine-ba Mandamin, carrying the water. Both photos by Sharon Day.

Read in-depth reporting about the Lake Superior Water Walk in the Star Tribune.

Seven youth joined us for a few days while we walked in the Duluth area. We wish they could have walked all the way but scheduled theatrical performances prevented that. They joined in again on August 30 and walked the rest of the way. (Photo: Jane Ramsayer Miller)

Photo by Jane Ramseyer Miller
Photo by Chas Jewett.

We met a family in grand portage. Rose, Richard and their granddaughter Eva. They were watching us and created signs welcoming us to grand portage. The next day, They joined us for the morning circle and Eva walked and carried the water. So much love in this family and so welcoming to us. (Image created by Joanne Robertson)

Collage by Joanne Robertson

Almost all of our evening meals have been home cooked by folks along the way. Chi migwetch to all of our hosts and guest walkers.

As we traveled through Canada all of the tribes took such good care of us, providing food and lodging. We received a particularly memorable welcome from the Michipicoten community. Chief Patricia Tangie walked with us and they fed us abundantly.

In the below photo Chief Tangie passes the water to Sara Thomsen. Photo by Sharon Day.

One morning in Pukaskwa National Park Dorene Moses led us in a water ceremony before we began walking.

Our friends arranged for a very smooth crossing over the 3 mile-long Sault Ste. Marie bridge into the United States. The bridge was closed from 5-6 AM so we could pass safely. In the darkness of early morning, the steam, flares, and smells from the nearby steel plant were especially vivid.

In this photo Sharon Manitowabi carries the staff and Sharon Day carries the water. Photo by Sara Thomsen.
We were met with generosity and support throughout our journey. Chi Migwetch to everyone who fed us, gave us shelter, donated resources, and cheered us on.
Final walk collage by Joanne Robertson

Donations Make Walks Happen

This walk is made possible through generous contributions that help keep our walkers safe, fed, sheltered, and able to focus on their walking prayer for the water.