Tuesday, July 16, 2013

State Park #5: Savannah Portage

I almost didn't count this little gem for my State Park Countydown, because of only being able to spend a mere 30 minutes roaming around this wilderness--but not for lack of trying! John and I went "up north" for the 4th of July weekend to spend time at his family friends' house. On our drive back from McGregor, we planned to hike at the nearest park,Savannah Portage State Park.

The highlight of Savannah Portage is walking the Continental Divide. Now, a girl from Colorado knows about Continental Divides; you can't avoid it--it's a mountain range! But in Minnesota the divide is slightly more subtle. From the state park site:
"Walk the Savanna Portage Trail, a historic trail traveled by fur traders, Dakota and Ojibwe Indians, and explorers more than 200 years ago. Savanna Portage State Park has 15,818 acres of rolling hills, lakes, and bogs. The Continental Divide marks the great division of water: water to the west flows into the Mississippi River; water to the east runs into Lake Superior." 

About to freak from
the flies on my legs
My plan to see bog wildflowers and walk along a great division of water did not go so swimmingly. We arrived in the early afternoon knowing it would be a bit hotter. The heat was not the problem. As soon as we rolled across the park line, we were attacked by a swarm of insects. We thought we'd take a shot at hiking anyway in case they might buzz off. They. did. not. We made it about 8 minutes along the ingrown trail before we couldn't stand it anymore. We jumped back into the car tried a different area.

Maybe the lake would be better. Although the calm, reflective water was charming, the bugs were not.  I did spot some wildflowers but the horseflies were too much. We walked for about 10 minutes around the edge of the lake before cutting our visit short.


John swatting at flies
Imagine hundreds of these guys


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