We decided to head south for an impromptu camping weekend in Lanesboro, located in Southern Minnesota, i.e. “Bluff Country.” After eating a breakfast at the Lefse factory (Norsland Lefse) we canoed 8 miles down the Root River, ending back at our campground, Eagle Cliff. The bluffs of southern Minnesota are really underrated; makes you wonder why everyone buys cabins up north. I wouldn’t mind having a cabin near the Root River someday. Lanesboro is a cute little town, like Northfield but smaller.
We headed up to Duluth for Labor Day weekend. We camped at Indian Point Campground in West Duluth, which is right on the St. Louis River (so, this summer we stayed on the river that feeds Lake Superior, as well as the one that drains it, the St. Marys in Brimley State Park). We spent Saturday up in Eveleth with Laurie and her wonderful cousins, and aunt and uncle. Sunday we went hiking in Jay Cooke State Park with Lindsey and Todd. Unfortunately, much of the park is still closed because of the 2012 Duluth floods. It was still a fun park; lots of rocks to climb on and river overlooks. Todd led us on a Death March since he accidentally took a wrong turn and we ended up hiking about 1.5 miles extra! I would have died if I hadn’t been carrying my new water backpack that everyone enjoyed making fun of me for. We had dinner at Fitger’s Brewhouse to regain some calories.
I had a great time with Megan, Sam, and Rylee at the Minnesota Zoo. Since the State Fair was going on at the same time, the crowds were manageable. The grizzly bear was the most entertaining. It was hot day so he was having a great time swimming. It really was like he was putting on a show for us!
Bayfield, WI is a super cute little town and we definitely will be back! We were only there overnight but we enjoyed a sunset Apostle Island Boat Cruise. We saw some awesome sea caves.
The Porcupine Mountains were our favorite stop on the trip. We camped at the onsite campground, Union Bay. The Porkies were a great place to hike. We could have stayed many more days exploring all the trails.
We were really looking forward to the Pictured Rock National Lakeshore boat tour. The weather was bad the night we got there so we got behind our originally planned schedule. We decided to stay an extra day (subsequently scratching our plans to go to Copper Harbor, MI) and see some of the waterfalls that were within a 20 mile radius of town (and were dog friendly). We also got a tip to check out a place the locals called “Paradise.” Down a long, windy dirt road through the woods (we thought some psycho hillbilly wielding a chainsaw was about to jump out at us any second) was a hidden rustic area where the rough waves collided with the rocks just below where we were standing. It was awesome! But wouldn’t you know it…those same rough waves cancelled our boat tour. There’s always next time.
Day 1-3 of the First Anniversary Lake Superior (Half) Circle Tour! We drove to Sault Ste Marie, Michigan in one day and set up camp at Brimley State Park. We didn’t spend much time in town since most of it wasn’t dog friendly–including the beautiful park that contained the Soo Locks that we were looking forward to seeing. We did have fun at Tahquamenon Falls, seeing some lighthouses, and visiting the Shipwreck Museum.
We camped at the Fox Hill Campground in Baraboo, WI with Corey’s mom and step-dad, Aunt Anita & Uncle Jim and cousins Rachel & Wyatt. Corey and I dragged Wyatt along with us to Devil’s Lake State Park. The map said “Balanced Rock Trail, 0.4 miles, 45 minutes. Difficult.” Oh, come on. How difficult can it be. DIFFICULT. (Like, Chrissy & Bruno up Mt. Baldy DIFFICULT, albeit shorter.) Going up with one bottle of water for the DOG was probably not a good idea. And ironically, the dog was the only one who didn’t need it. She hopped right up the trail (which was basically like haphazard stone steps) and whined at us when we stopped to attempt a return to a normal sinus rhythm. And the Balanced Rock photo op? Judge for yourself below.
But it wasn’t all bad. Getting up and down was an enormous accomplishment. And, now that I see the photos, it really was a great view. And, the important thing is…I got a double scoop Turtle Sundae from Culver’s at the end.
My Best Friend’s Wedding. A small ceremony and a 3 hour tour around Lake Minnetonka. I played the part of makeup artist, guestbook monitor, photographer, prop provider, and DJ. Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. Dawson!
The torrential rain stopped just as Jody and I arrived at Rock the Garden. We saw Bob Mould, Silversun Pickups, and my fave, Metric. I had to bring my point and shoot Canon since they didn’t allow “professional” cameras (i.e. “anything where the lens can be separated form the camera body”). The boom camera was also constantly in my shot…the upcoming episode of mnorginal, where they will air the footage it shot, had better be good. See a time lapse of the whole day set to one of my favorite Metric songs!