Although the pandemic has cut most of us off from our regular lives, a remote Minnesota community has been cut off more than most — those in Northwest Angle, Minnesota, are unable to travel by land to the United States because they would have to drive through Manitoba.
Northwest Angle is a U.S. exclave located north of the Canada-U.S. border on the coast of Lake of the Woods, between Ontario and Manitoba. Because of a surveying error when borders were drawn up, all of the Northwest Angle’s land borders are with Canada, which means that residents there have been cut off from their own country during the pandemic due to border closures.
On Sunday, Paul Colson said, “We’re under house arrest.” “If we are to leave our little exclave here at the Northwest Angle, we must first ask Canada for permission to leave, how far we can travel, and how long we will be gone. We are not permitted to have visitors”.
If Americans were allowed to travel by land in a specific corridor from the Minnesota border to Northwest Angle, Manitoba, the Colsons would be able to accommodate more guests at their resort. It would also allow them to travel in and to the United States if they so desired.
“You can have GPS tracking, a $10,000 fine if you stop, whatever,” Colson explained.
“We don’t want to stop in Manitoba, we don’t want to run around Canada; we just want to go from the United States to the United States.”
For the time being, the family is trapped by a geographical error made years ago, hoping that they will soon be able to travel into the rest of Minnesota.