Saturday, June 30, 2012

Quick trip to Scenic State Park

Kathy and I took a quick trip to Scenic State Park this week to celebrate our 41st wedding anniversary (but who's counting...) and to escape the 90 degree heat of the city. The weather was great and we had a good time. Bugs chased us inside a couple of times but mostly we had a nice breeze which kept things comfortable.

Scenic State Park is one of the oldest state parks in Minnesota. It was created in 1921 as the last of the great virgin white pines were being cut across the region. It protects the old growth along the shoreline of two lakes separated by a glacial esker. The campground contains a log lodge with a great stone fireplace built by the CCC.

We took our canoe along on the roof of the camper which worked great. I was able to load it on top without assistance and a few straps secured it in place. Forgot to take a picture but it looked right at home up there.

We found a campsite in the lodge campground right by the lake and set up our camp. Cooking was easy with the new Partner stove made for us by the Partner Steel Company in Idaho. The stove is high quality, easy to set up and to take apart to clean and cooks fast.

There was only one other family in the campground- grandparents, kids and grandkids who have been coming to the park for 30 years. It was fun to see an extended family hanging out together. The grandparents also had a pop-up camper, larger than ours on a larger truck, and were very interested in our camper. They have been to Alaska in their camper, a trip Kathy and I hope to do one day.

We took some walks with Rocky, went canoeing, did some swimming and saw some loons and wildflowers up close. Evenings were closed out with campfires.

On the way home we checked out the flooding around Aitkin. Very heartbreaking to see homes and businesses under water. The area has received over 12 inches of rain this month and the Mississippi River was over 6 feet above flood stage. Many of the lakes have been polluted from flooded septic systems and are clogged with sunken docks and debris. It will be all summer before things can be cleaned up. Unreal.

It was a short trip but much enjoyed.

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