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Outdoors Posts

Exploring Madeline Island’s Rocky Shore

Wading/rock-hopping up Madeline Island’s beautiful bay shore of sandstone boulders. My little love letter to the island.

Madeline Island Diving Board

PDD Quiz: Parks of Duluth

The summer weather is upon us and the outdoors are calling. Duluth is home to 133 parks and green spaces, according to the city of Duluth website. How many parks can you identify from photographs and brief descriptions? Fire up the quiz and find out!

Our next quiz, reviewing June happenings, will be posted on June 25. E-mail question suggestions to Alison Klawiter at [email protected] by June 22.

Hiking the North Country Trail in Wisconsin: Wood Tick Flats

You can’t start hiking the North Country Trail at the border of Minnesota and Wisconsin without first hiking in from one direction or the other. If you want to go southeast through Wisconsin, for example, you need to start on Wild Valley Road in Minnesota and hike in for 3.2 miles.

I don’t know how far into Wisconsin you’ll get if you try that. As of the date of this post, the interactive map on northcountrytrail.org is unclear. It’s hard to tell if the trail ends cold in the woods, dumps out on a highway or carries on uninterrupted.

On the gorgeous Sunday afternoon of June 4, I tried to solve this mystery and failed. It was still a fun scouting mission, though, and that’s what I’ll share in this essay. Obviously I could call the trail association or maybe spend an hour scrolling through Facebook posts to obtain the knowledge I seek about the state of the trail, but I’d still want to see it for myself, so why bother with the hands-off research, right?

It has been thoroughly documented in a series of 13 essays on this very website that I slowly and somewhat methodically hiked all of Minnesota’s Superior Hiking Trail in sporadic spurts from 2000 to 2016. That journey started at the Canadian border and ended on the Wisconsin border. But the trail doesn’t stop at either of those points. The SHT is part of a much longer trail — the North Country National Scenic Trail — which extends to Lake Sakakawea State Park in North Dakota to the west and Crown Point in New York to the east.

Drone footage from the North Shore of Lake Superior

Twin Cities videographer Matt Smith of Odyssey Visuals recently took a quick weekend trip up the North Shore and captured these images from his drone.

Fly Fishing for Brookies

Friends Alyssa and Max play hooky with brookies. (Alyssa is also teaching fly tying at the Beer ‘n’ Bugs event at Bent Paddle on Friday [event time is listed incorrectly in the calendar, should read 6pm-9pm].)

Piedmont Plunge

Often helmet-cam videos of mountain bike runs have a music soundtrack. This one by Baylor Litsey, shot on the Piedmont Mountain Bike Trails in Duluth, sticks with the natural sounds for a more realistic glimpse of the trail-riding experience.

Memorial Day Northern Lights Real Time Video

Richard Hoeg captures the sights of the Northern Lights and sounds of loons in the distance in this video shot over Little Stone Lake, about 40 miles northeast of Duluth. The video was taken on Hoeg’s Sony A6000 with an ISO setting of 3,200.

Standing Still on a Moving Ice Sheet

Magical Duluth.

One From the Vault

2014

Exploring Tischer Creek After a Rain

With my wing man Alyssa.

Where near Duluth?

Came across this and couldn’t resist posting it. I’m going to be impressed if someone can locate this one, but I suppose it’s not out of the question. I am going to guess that the Duluth News Tribune doesn’t actually deliver to this one, though.

The Weird Hole

Chester Creek.

Creamy Stouts on the Brule

Clint Massey plunges down the Brule River in this short video by Brian Robin and Jesse Credille, shot April 22.

First Tick of the Year — 2017 Edition

Wood Tick 2017Happy Resurrection Day! I wish I were referring to the savior Jesus Christ and the Easter holiday, but today was the day I found my first tick of 2017. So April 16 marks the beginning of the 2017 tick resurrection. It’s something I’ve posted about almost annually on Perfect Duluth Day since 2005. Sometimes it happens as early as March, sometimes not until June, but the ticks always come back.

I picked up this year’s first tick by walking to the eastern terminus of the Millennium Trail in Superior and continuing past the parking lot there on a grassy trail to an overlook of Kelly Bay. I found two ticks while hiking; by the time three body searches were completed at home, the total count rose to six wood ticks and one deer tick.