Week Two: Duluth to Grand Marais, MN
It was foggy and rainy the day we left Duluth. As we headed out of the city and started our way up Highway 61 we were passed by a woman on a bicycle who exclaimed, “Great day for a training run!” If only she knew what was ahead. The 113 miles of the North Shore between Duluth and Grand Marais have been good to us, albeit foggy, rainy and windy. We’ve been blessed with a lot of hospitality all the way up this end of the lake. As we made it to the end of our first day from Duluth we were surprised to have some of Andy’s family friends reach out to us with a warm and dry camper to stay in just a few miles north of where we were planning on camping that night.
Further up the shore we camped out at Gooseberry Falls, which ended up being one of the few clear nights we’ve had this week. After making good time on the road to Gooseberry we were able to unpack our trusty stroller, Rig, and ramble through the park. We made our way down to the shore to ice our legs before hiking up to sit and ponder the beauty of the falls. That night we had the opportunity to star gaze, something we haven’t been able to do much of due to cloud cover and exhaustion.
Several weeks prior to our time on the North Shore, we were contacted by a family living near Tettegouche State Park who offered us a place to rest our legs. We had no idea what sort of kindness and generosity we would get to experience during our two days with the Swansons. We spent a stormy rest day with them drinking home-roasted coffee, hunting for agates and hanging out with their five engaging kids. We left their beautiful home well-rested and well-fed.
Our good friends John and Andrea caught up with us thirteen miles down the road. John joined us for our last six miles that day as Andrea traveled ahead to meet us at Temperance River State Park. Despite another rainy evening we feasted on kim chi, dilly beans and foods we wouldn’t otherwise be eating. John’s fresh legs paced us to Cascade River State Park the next day while we happily lagged behind.
The last day of our week found us running into Grand Marais, Andy’s hometown. We kept busy our second rest day of the week with a radio interview, catching up with friends and spending time with Andy’s family. Week two marks the end of our time in the United States until July. It’s been a treat to spend so much time with the friends and family up the shore but, we’re eager to see what Canada has in store for us.