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The term Iron Range refers collectively or individually to a number of elongated iron-ore mining districts around Lake Superior in the United States and Canada. Despite the word "range", the iron ranges are not mountain chains, but outcrops of Precambrian sedimentary formations containing high percentages of iron. These cherty iron ore deposits are Precambrian in age for the Vermilion Range and middle Precambrian in age for the Mesabi and Cuyuna ranges, all in Minnesota. The Gogebic Range in Wisconsin and the Marquette Iron Range and Menominee Range in Michigan have similar characteristics and are of similar age. Natural ores and concentrates were produced from 1848 until the mid 1950s, when taconites and jaspers were concentrated and pelletized, and started to become the major source of iron production.The region's far eastern area, containing the Duluth Complex along the shore of Lake Superior, and the far northern area, along the Canada–US border, are not associated with iron ore mining. Due to its shape, the area is collectively known as the Arrowhead region of Minnesota. It consists of seven counties: Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, and Saint Louis.
Lake Winnibigoshish is a body of water in north central Minnesota, in the Chippewa National Forest. Its name comes from the Ojibwe language Wiinibiigoonzhish, a diminutive and pejorative form of Wiinibiig, meaning "filthy water" (i.e., "brackish water"). The name is related in structure to Lake Winnipeg and to the Algonquian name for Lake Winnebago, which the Ho-chunk (Winnebago) Nation was named after.The Lake's area of 67,000 acres makes it the fourth largest in Minnesota. The headwaters of the Mississippi River begin at Lake Itasca (see Mississippi River Basin map); where it flows through Winnibigoshish, the Mississippi is at its widest - more than 11 miles.The former Winnibigoshish Township (now unorganized), located on the north shore of Lake Winnibigoshish, in Itasca County, Minnesota, was named after this lake.
Leech Lake is a lake located in north central Minnesota, United States. It is southeast of Bemidji, located mainly within the Leech Lake Indian Reservation, and completely within the Chippewa National Forest. It is used as a reservoir. The lake is the third largest in Minnesota, covering 102,947.83 acres (416.6151 km2) with 195 miles (314 km) of shoreline and has a maximum depth of 156 feet (48 m).