Saturday, June 26, 2010
Spent the previous night in Rock Creek State Park about 40 mi east of Des Moines. Park was great, people very friendly. My kudos to Iowa. It was surprisingly crowded for a Thursday night. Got on the road about 9:00 am and headed north to Minnesota. Stopped at the worlds largest Bass Pro Shop in Altoona IA looking for mosquito killer - no luck. Then on to I -35. Here is theis great big road in the middle of nowhere and it is more crowded than the Pa Turnpike - what gives? So, passed a bunch of wind turbine farms on the way - fascinating. Finally got one of those legendary breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches - picture enclosed. in Albert Lea Minnesota - just across the IA / MN border.Gorgeous territory along the way - basically flat but with some very gentle roll - lots of trees and ponds.
Finally got up to Minn / St. Paul area around 3:00 pm. Again, arrived in the middle of a tornado warning. Traffic was TERRIBLE!! Washington DC is easier to get around. So finally headed north in US 169 to Mille Lacs State Park. Rained, rained and rained some more. Pulled into the campsite about 9:00 pm. Rain had stopped but the place was a sea of mud and skeets everywhere. 100% Deet again, I smell like an oil well. Oh by the way $41.00 to camp, no running water, no showers.
So, I took Leo for a walk down one of the trails - beautiful and peaceful listening to the loons but then Mr. Leo decided to run into the filthiest black mud hole he could find. I had to rinse him with bottled water. Again, a night in a car with a wet dog and skeets - I need some strong liquor! Believe it or not though, the temps were cool and I slept well. Saw two deer on the way out of the park - Leo wanted to chase. So, this morning, I took him to a public boat ramp on Mille Lac and gave him a bath in the lake. That helped some. But Mille Lac is beautuful and I woul love to find a way to fish the place. Lots ofe expensive summer cottages and a big Indian Casino.
So today, we head to the Mesabi Iron Range to see some iron ore - that's where steel starts in case you did not know. Then into Canada and hopefully back into MN to camp on the shores of Lake of the Woods.