Outdoors Posts

Duluth Party on Madeline Island 2009

Isolate the hole, people. Isolate the hole.

Large-flowered trilliums

trilliums847Have you noticed these suckers are everywhere this spring?

I must see eight dozen wild flowers for every tick I pluck off my socks. Not a bad ratio.

Straight Lake State Park


If you ever wanted to see a state park before it’s a state park, here’s your chance. Straight Lake State Park is about two and a half hours away from Duluth, near Luck, Wisconsin.

It is, legally, already a state park, but don’t look for big brown road signs to help you find it. The tiny yellow marker pictured above is all I found. (And when I asked people at a convenience store a few miles away for directions, the best advice I could get was “try asking at the library.”)

There’s an old ATV trail that runs through it (can’t drive those in there anymore) but otherwise there are not really any established trails, maps, parking spots, campsites, ranger stations, etc. (There are little flags here and there that show where some of those things might go some day.)

It is quite a nice lake, so I do recommend it. I wouldn’t say you should drive the 120+ miles from Duluth for this single purpose, but if you’re in the area, check it out.

Lake Superior Circle Tour Presentation

On Saturday, June 13 at 1 p.m., Lake Superior Magazine‘s own Paul Hayden will present an informative program about traveling the Lake Superior Circle Tour.

The presentation is free and open to the public, but please pre-register as space is limited. A second showing will be scheduled at 2:30 p.m. if attendance requires. The presentation will be held at the offices of Lake Superior Magazine, 310 E. Superior St. in Duluth.

For more information or to register, please call 218-722-5002 888-BIG-LAKE, or e-mail reader @ lakesuperior.com.

Fishing hole?

I am looking for a family-friendly place to fish from shore. Somewhere relatively close to Duluth would be best. Any suggestions?

Good place to buy a used canoe?


I’m thinking about buying a canoe and would like your advice on the best local places.  A used canoe would be perfectly fine as long as it is not going to leak. I’ve heard some of the outfitters up by the boundary waters sell used canoes from time to time but don’t know where or when to look for these sales. Any recommendations about places to avoid would be welcome too.

For your consideration…


Just want to make sure everyone is on the same page regarding the “mystery barrels”.  The Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa out of Bayfield, WI have secured over $1 million from the Department of Defense to remove about 70 of the barrels for testing.  PDF here of the 2008 MN DOH “Health Consultation” regarding the barrels.  Link here to Nukewatch’s compendium on barrel research including a full collection of local news releases on the subject.

Please share this info with friends and neighbors.

Pomp and (Impressive) Circumstance

I spend a lot of time on what I affectionately call “the dark underbelly of Duluth.” That is, around people in really rough circumstances with tough, long odds against them. As soon as I post this, I am headed up to the Arrowhead Juvenile Center, to spend some time with young dads up there, for example. But one thing that circumstances can’t extinguish is hope. It will live on even against the greatest odds, I’ve seen it happen over and over again and I’m convinced that it’s true.

Life House for Youth "Opening Doors for Kids on the Streets."

The climate of Duluth, circa 1914

I don’t know if anyone has ever seen/read this or not (I imagine there might be a copy at one of our libraries), but I stumbled on it on archive.org:



note the pre-lift bridge on the cover, plus there’s a few other neat old photos inside, plus some interesting reading, and some interesting old data…

Hillside Tree Hits the Medium Time

Big Tree in the Hillside, Duluth, MN

Big Tree in the Hillside, Duluth, MN

My tree snapshot was selected for the MN DNR Arbor Day photo gallery, they are looking for nominations of Minnesotans favorite trees and mine made the list. Or “a” list, anyway, not sure if it’s “the” list. Submissions are open for at least the rest of the month.
Try the DNR Photo Gallery here, my pic is about half way through MN DNR Arbormonth Photo Gallery

Mark your calendars


I’ve decided that this weekend will be the weekend to switch from manhattans to gin and tonics.

UMD Farmers Market Starts Next Week!

UMD Farmers Market Starts May 20!

May 20~September 30


UMD Kirby Plaza Bus Hub

LOCAL Produce, Music and Artisans!


Leah Nelson

[email protected]


Ride the Bus or Park for FREE!

Campus Map: http://www.d.umn.edu/parking/lots.html


What you might find at the Market:

· Fruits and Berries

· Vegetables

· Flowers

· Maple syrup

· Baked goods

· Transplants

· Herbs and Spices

· Much more!




Outdoor Movie Schedule Announced

From Twin Ports Nightlife:

2009 Movies In The Park Schedule

June 19th – Leatherheads (2008) – Rated PG-13

June 26th – Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade (1989) – Rated PG-13

July 3rd – Superman (1978) – Rated PG

July 10th – Kung Fu Panda (2008) – Rated PG

July 17th – Men In Black (1997) – Rated PG-13

July 24th – Journey To The Center Of The Earth-3D (2008) – Rated PG

July 31st – Iron Man (2008) – Rated PG-13

August 7th – Sixteen Candles (1984) – Rated R (original) PG (on appeal)

August 14th – Harry Potter: The Prisoner of Azkaban (2004) – Rated PG

August 21st – Lord Of The Rings: Return of the King (2003) – Rated PG-13

August 28th – Madagascar (2005) – Rated PG

Stop! Thief!


Obligatory first tick(s) of the season post

It’s official, yesterday was the Perfect Duluth Day. The ticks are out today. I plucked off my first one at 4:35 p.m. and the second at 4:37 p.m.

And yes, I do post on PDD about ticks pretty much every  spring. It’s what I do.

June 8, 2008
May 11, 2007
June 6, 2005

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