Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ready to Explore

I finally ordered a few books to help me explore my new state parks. I ordered used books after my North Shore adventure last weekend. I LOVE finding windflowers and studying new flora and fauna. Now I have some help! 

After some research, I picked: 
Minnesota State Parks by Anne Arthur
     Helpful maps, overview, and even a place to write notes for each park.  
Wildflower a of Minnesota by Stan Tekiela 
     Hand-sized field guide with a color index, simple anatomical icons, and a check-off list. 

Lets do this! 

Monday, May 27, 2013

State Park Count Down

I was able to get away this Memorial Day with my beau, John. We escaped to the North Shore. I've learned that when Minnesotans want to get away they usually "go up north" which could mean "the cabin" or to the North Shore. The North Shore is the shore of Lake Superior from Duluth to Canada. Colorado equivalent: "going to the mountains".

The North Shore

I had never seen Lake Superior or anything north of the Cities, actually. I was surprised by the cliffs and how expansive the lake is. We spent our day in two state parks: Split Rock Lighthouse and Gooseberry. I knew they would be a bit touristy especially on Memorial Day weekend but I wanted to start somewhere to explore my new state. They really weren't that crowed; we
Split Rock Lighthouse State Park
still got alone time everywhere we went. We stayed in Two Harbors. We realized was a bad idea when, at 6pm, we were bored. We traveled 20 minutes to Duluth for a drink which is where we should have stayed. O well! Coming back we took the scenic route. Seriously, it's called North Shore Scenic Route. The road was dotted with quaint cabins and beautiful views of the coast. We should stay in one of those lodges next time!

I loved seeing the forest wake up: the leaves were budding and the ferns spouting fiddleheads. I can't wait to explore the wildflowers this summer. That got me thinking...

I want to visit all the Minnesota state parks. All 68. The next on my list will be a place to enjoy wildflowers fully. See my State Park Count Down page to keep track! 

Gooseberry Falls State Park