Sunday, July 12th, 2009
St. Joseph, MN to Nelson, MN (58 mi)
We got up pretty early and packed up our quiet camp and left. We quickly got up on the Lake Wobegon trail and headed west. It was soooo nice to be on a paved trail again… we can ride next to each other, don’t have to worry about looking behind us all the time, etc. There were a lot of crossings in certain parts of the trail, but those are much preferable to being on the road.
I’m writing this a week removed and things are starting to meld together. I think we had tailwinds today for the first time in awhile. There were a lot of little towns along the trail with places to stop for breakfast, lunch, second lunch, etc.
I’m pretty sure this was the day we met up with what we joked were our “back to the future” selves. We saw them ahead of us on the trail, heading in the same direction as us. We joked that they were trying to see us (“them”) in this day and age without actually letting us see them (“us”). If that makes any sense at all 🙂 It took us forever to catch up with them… we know we’re slow with all our gear! Eventually we caught up with them at a stop and chatted. They were from South Dakota, I think, and we swapped some stories, and they offered to share some of their maps with us when we got to where they were parked, a few miles down the trail.
We passed some interesting sites on the way along the trail, as you can see from the pictures below… a little touristy “railroad town” called Memoryville, some beautiful churches, and a very large viking.
Oh yeah… I remember a hallmark of this day. We decided we were going to try and save some money today by starting out with a “European” breakfast of bread, meat, and cheese from a grocery store, and having the leftovers for lunch. So we did that, but didn’t get great bread, only some “sandwich thins”. It was fine for breakfast, ok for lunch, and by the time we ate the last of it for dinner, we were SO tired of it.
We weren’t quite sure where we were going to stay as the day wore on, and we stopped at a bar and grill for some nachos and beer. We talked with some of the folks about the campsites and “resorts” that were close by, then started calling places. A bunch of the “resorts” don’t allow overnight/tent camping, and one of them was promising, based on what people said, but didn’t pick up the phone. We had called twice with no answer and just decided to head there – it wasn’t that far off the trail. We got there and the office was empty (it was Sunday, after all) but there was a phone number for the campsite manager. We called the number but didn’t get a response, so decided to just put our stuff out that needed to dry in the last of the sun and wait for a bit. No callback, so we pitched our tent and tried to make ourselves as compact as possible, just so we wouldn’t be in the way. It was a really beautiful location, on a lake, and I enjoyed hearing loons for the first time in a long time.