"Of all the paths you take in life make sure a few of them are dirt" US Forest Sevice

Friday, August 14, 2015

Willard Munger Trail and St Croix State Park

We decided a 40 mile bike ride on the state trail would be good after spending the past days driving. Who cares that temps would be 88 degrees with high humidity? I thought that riding on a flat rails to trail would be a piece of cake after riding in Colorado. Not so. When riding flat terrain, if you stop pedaling with a head wind, you stop all together. We stopped in the next town to get cold drinks. Our ice water was warm. A lady asked what we were doing riding in this humidity. I looked in the mirror and my bright red face looked like the windshields of the cars, covered with bugs.
Along the trail, there are places to camp.

The blackberries were ready for picking and we did.

It is hard to tell but 3 horned owls flew over our heads. They were huge. One stopped and was looking at me with those great eyes. I tried to get a pictures but totally missed him before he backed off. Mike was only able to get a distant picture.

The persevered railroad stations along the path in each town.

How could we pass up a farm stand on the way home? I bet we stop again tomorrow for more tomatoes.
St Croix State Park has a fire tower that was built in 1937 and we thought we should climb it.

As we got higher, it got cooler since the breeze could go thru the treetops and less bugs.

It is flat here.

Good thing we got out early for our walk. We decided against kayaking because of the heat. There are shuttles to take you up river. Things are supposed to cool down Sunday. It almost feels like Costa Rica here. We are still having a good time just spending the afternoons in the air conditioning.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

South Dakota and the nice people

We decided to leave the Black Hills and skip the Badlands to get to Sioux Falls where Schaap's Traveland thought they had the motor we needed. We didn't want to get there on Friday and have to order one if it was the wrong one. We were in luck. They got us in and taken care of in 2 hours and it was under warranty. Bonus. It was actually too hot to be in the Badlands. I don't think there is a tree anywhere. It is so pretty driving across the rolling hills with all of the different crops.

I kind of like the sunflowers all facing the sunrise.
We don't usually let it get this low. That was one thirsty F 150.

Sioux Falls has a beautiful downtown park with bike trails along the river. The traffic here is so much nicer and speed limit 80 mph. We can't go that fast pulling a trailer. I think the wheels could have a problem. We have seen quite a few trailers and 5th wheels that have blown tires. A couple from Virginia were having lots of 5th wheel problems going and leaving Sturgis. They were waiting to get an axil repaired. Our issue was nothing compared to some of the stories we have heard.
Tomorrow is our last big driving day for a while. It will be nice to just be there. Where ever that is.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Happy birthday Mike in the Black Hills

Today was much cooler for our hike after  having temps in the high 80s. We had spent time in the Black Hills 6 years ago and were glad to return for some hiking.

The sun was shining as we drove into the Cathedral Spires area with amazing views of the rocks.

The tunnels are quite narrow and with this one being 8 feet and 4 inches wide, we had to pull in our mirrors to fit through.

What a nice lush hike. The raspberries were rather tasty and flowers everywhere. Not a bad way to spend a birthday.

As we got higher the clouds kept getting lower which made for a cooler hike. The sun gets pretty intense this time of year.

We made it up Devil's Overlook which included some scrambling. But about half way to Harney Lookout, there was thunder to the west and then to the north. We turned around and made it back and just beat the downpour.

We got here for the end of the Sturgis Rally and never saw so many motorcycles in one place. There were so many beautiful bikes everywhere. The tow trucks were busy with lots of break downs along the road. The rigs that many of the bikes arrived in were pretty impressive.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Troubles on the road

We made it to Hot Springs, SD. While leaving Colorado, our refrigerator was not working right on propane. We stopped in Camping World in Longmont for a little advise and got the come back in two weeks, brushoff. Mike was able to get in and find the cottonwood cotton had blocked the line and clean it out. We were so thankful our full fridge was back in order. Down the road we found the slide out making funny noises and not working right. All of the RV people were busy even the mobile RV guys we tried to get while in Douglas, WY. Once situated in WY, we called Rapid City to see if we could get on the schedule and they were so nice and helpful. They diagnosed the problem but did not have the part. So Bear called a place near where we had planned to be next week in MN and arranged that we get it fixed there. The service guy there is ordering the part and maybe it will all work out.
Douglas, WY gave us a very nice goodnight sunset.
A good way to end the day after hitting the pool since all of the kids left this morning. Tomorrow is Mike's birthday. We hope to do some hiking and will have to leave early since it is pretty hot in the afternoons here.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Mt Evans

We are finally on the road after finishing up our jobs and getting everything in order. I really didn't think the day would come. We had to stop in Highland Ranch, Co to see the boys before heading out. They just keep growing and growing up.
We had always talked about going up Mt Evans since many people ride their bikes up it. Not something I aspire to do.
We didn't hike up but did hike once we got there. The temperatures in Denver were in the upper 90s. On the top of the mountain it was 48 degrees. It was good to get away but the twisty road was a bit much at times. My camera isn't taking pictures as well as it once did. I may have to look into another soon. I like the smaller ones that I can put in my pocket while riding my bike. That will probably limit me.