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Random thoughts, rants, raves and photo opportunities

2017 - Whitewater State Park, Elba, MN

We wrapped up the summer with three nights of camping during Labor Day weekend at Whitewater State Park. We managed to enjoy all of the parks primary features; we hiked to Coyote Point and the Hiking Club password, climbed to Chimney Rock, swam in the Whitewater River, and climbed the nearby Elba Fire Tower. All in all it was a fantastic weekend.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Lake Bronson State Park, Lake Bronson, MN

What turned out to be our last camping outing of the season, our gang hauled our rig up to the northwest corner of Minnesota to camp at Lake Bronson State Park. Located just outside the town of Lake Bronson, MN, the state park nicely maintained and provided us with a joyful weekend of camping with family and friends. We experienced torrential rains during one full day but we didn't let that get in the way of a relaxing weekend.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Big Bog State Recreation Area, Waskish, MN

I dragged the rig up to the north woods to camp at Big Bog State Recreation Area for the weekend. It was my base of operations for a hiking and geocaching excursion to complete my fourth tour of the Minnesota State Park System. I was pleasantly surprised at how nice and well kept the campground is here. Located on Upper Red Lake, this area is a fisherman's dream. The mosquitoes were a treat but I would for sure return to stay here again. The highlight for me this weekend was the hike to the Hiking Club password located at the end of the bog walk. What a splendid experience.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2016 - Schoolcraft State Park, Deer River, MN

Laura and Bart like to hit the camping season early to work the kinks out of the travel trailer and camping gear. This spring they headed to Schoolcraft State Park. It's located in Deer River, MN, which is about eight miles west of Grand Rapids, MN. Located on the banks of the Mississippi River, Schoolcraft might be one of Minnesota's smallest state parks. When we originally reserved our site, the entire campground was nearly completely booked. When it came to camping weekend, Laura and Bart were quite literally the ONLY campers in the entire park. I suspect the 3" of snow that fell on night #1 had a lot to do with park attendance.

While visiting the park, they found the park's wildflower geocache, acquired the State Park Passport stamp, and hiked the Hiking Club Trail. It was a cute little park but fru-fru campers beware, there is no electricity or showers here. And in spite of what the online Reservation System says, site #3 will be very difficult to back your travel trailer into as there is a Norway Pine tree blocking the approach.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - John A. Latsch State Park, Minnesota City, MN

There is no camping or Hiking Club trail at John A. Latsch State Park, so the next best thing to do is to climb the stairs to the top of Mount Charity. The 800 step climb to the top is brutal, especially in the heart of the summer, but the view 500' above the river is breathtaking.
  

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - Lake Louise State Park, Leroy, MN

I went on a solo camping outing to Lake Louise State Park this weekend to enjoy some hiking and geocaching. The park is located near Le Roy, MN, just north of the border with Iowa. I was concerned that camping here would be a bad experience as the park is one of the smallest parks in the system and most people I speak with have never even heard of it. But I was pleasantly surprised that with only 20 campsites, the quaint little park it was cute and very well maintained. Along with the Hiking Club trail I completed, I also spent part of my weekend biking on the Shooting Star Bike Trail. I would definitely return to Lake Louise at some point in the future.
  

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - Father Hennepin State Park, Isle, MN

Our first family outing in the new travel trailer was at Father Hennepin State Park on the beautiful Mille Lacs Lake. We joined with friends and managed to have a pretty full weekend which included geocaching, hiking, biking, hanging out at the beach, and bowling. This was one of the more enjoyable camping outings in quite some time.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - Jay Cooke State Park, Carlton, MN

Laura and Bart planned a camping trip to Jay Cooke State Park to take the new camping rig on its maiden voyage. While there, we managed to attend two geocaching events, grab the passport club stamp, hiked the four mile trek to the Hiking Club password, and biked a 10 mile geocache power trail. The campsite we had chosen was a little on the cramped side, but the park itself is a wonderful place to visit and is on the short list of places to return.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2014 - Flandrau State Park, New Ulm, MN

The family headed down to Flandrau State Park for our grand finale to the 2014 camping season. We spent the four day MEA weekend enjoying the spectacular fall weather and gorgeous fall colors. When we weren't hiking or playing along the Cottonwood River, the proximity of the park to New Ulm, MN, gave us an opportunity to visit the August Schells Brewery.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2014 - Temperance River State Park, Schroeder, MN

As soon as school was out for the summer we hit the road with the camper. Our destination is to one of our favorite locations on the entire planet, the northern shore of Lake Superior. We spent four nights at Temperance River State Park. Located near Schroeder, MN, Temperance River is one of eight jewels along the north shore. Hiking along the shoreline and the cascades of the river is something everyone has to experience in their lifetime.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..