Steve, Dale and I, left my house on Thursday morning around 6:30 am and headed north. When we arrived in Duluth it was warm and pissing rainy mist. We (I) wanted to check out Park Point and possibly do a ride. Other bloggers have been posting pics of the beach for a while now and I thought it would be a good opportunity for a sweet ride. It turned out to be the best ride of the weekend ! Initially we rode on sand and avoided the crashing waves that were breaking at about four feet high a hundred (or so) feet out. The shore would soon turn to a wall of conglomerate ice chunks, welded together by snow about ten feet high, and much higher in a few spots. Some of these areas we could ride and just waited out the sets of waves so we could make our break for an opening in the wall. Each of us encountered bad timing and the result was water and ice chunks above the axles on our bikes. Some of the really tall "ice walls" forced us to ride further inland on top of the whole mess, but as soon as we found an open spot to ride we were back in the sand.
After the ride we continued north. I wanted to check out a water fall on the Manitou River. We loaded up with harnesses and a rope and some other gear that I had heard we would need. This trip down the river was one that I have not done, so it was purely exploration with the hope that we would be able to do a rappel and get back out the way we came in. Our attempt was a big failure, it took almost two hours of bushwhacking down a creek bed to get to the river. On the map it looked straight forward but was a huge mess of tangled woody vegetation. We reached the river at dusk and decided to wander on a little farther with the hopes of seeing something interesting. No such luck, we were on a flat section of river for a half hour walking into the darkness. Breaking out the headlamps we headed back with our tails between our legs and tired from trudging through a foot and a half of new snow.
|On our way to Manitou River|
|The guinea pig|
|This is Mark, you wouldn't know it by the pic, but he is a good christian man|