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50 States, Day 74

Day 74, Around Bemidji, MN 74 miles
"It is during our darkest moments that we must focus on the light."
~Aristotle Onassis
Minnesota holds many fables, from Paul Bunyan and his ox Babe, to Garrison
Keillor's Lake Wobegone. Mr. Keillor tells the stories and Mr. Bunyan is the
We dodged some awful weather in Minnesota. Last week, ninety miles per hour winds destroyed trees and buildings. Duluth suffered damage from eight inches of rainfall in an hour. Then ninety degree heat with seventy percent humidity
slammed the state too. However, today the high of ninety felt pretty warm, but not too uncomfortable.

Minnesota glows green, from the maple and oak trees to its pines and firs, the land lies under a heavy blanket of vibrant green.
We toured Lake Itasca State Park, which is head and shoulders above most state parks we've seen. It felt like a national park with its visitor’s centers, dioramas, and depictions of the history and geology of Minnesota. Lake Itasca holds center stage as the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Reading the history, the debate over where or what actually was the headwaters roared for decades. The Mississippi holds fourth place in the world as rivers are judged, both for length and volume of water. Apparently being the headwaters of the fourth biggest river is a big deal, and it must be, as we all trooped down the trail to cross the river at its source. I tried another underwater shot of my shoes. It always feels uncomfortable sticking the camera underwater, but it did the job, no problem.

We jumped on the Gold Wing sport bike-it feels like it compared to pulling the trailer-and rode to a few trails, then to a 160 foot ranger's tower, where they sit to watch for fires, before satellite technology. Another visitor's center, then off to Bemidji.

Bemidji puffs out its chest whenever anyone talks about Paul Bunyan and Babe.
They have the actual size models of both of them...or maybe they are half
scale, I don't know. I'm pretty sure Greenpeace ran Paul out of town a few years back, and a dozen naked PETA people with signs that read, "I'd rather be naked than a blue ox," (whatever THAT means) ran her out of town too. PETBO (People for the Ethical Treatment of Blue Oxen) are apparently working to get her back.

We motored back to the (PP!) KOA and hopped in the pool. Aaah! A nice way to
cool off after all day outdoors.
People advised us to avoid Duluth, as they suffered massive rainfall last week, so we are going to Duluth tomorrow. Call it macabre, but I like to see what went on in their fair city. Hopefully, we can tour a mine as well. See you tomorrow, and thanks for following.



John D said...

This is John & Inez from Southern Indiana. We are reading your blog everyday. Thank you all for entertaining us. I also follow on Google Earth.

................................ Kevin Parsons said...

Thanks John and Inez! We will see you soon in Indiana too.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kevin and Sherri, this is Mike and Jean from Minneapolis. We chatted with you today at Tettegouche State Park, admiring your rig in the parking lot. Hope you found some good things in Minneapolis. We very much enjoyed visiting with you and hearing your story, and will be following your blog.

................................ Kevin Parsons said...

I hope you enjoy following our trip and you hopefully had a nice hike too. Got to Duluth today, beautiful.