The following is a true story, only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Soo Line

 On Sunday morning of the Agate Days weekend in Moose Lake, I was able to get out for a couple hours on the Fargo. About a month ago, when Big "D" and I were four-wheeling on a spur of the Soo Line Trail we came to a bottomless mud hole which I was not going to risk getting stuck in. I knew the trail went down to the Kettle River, but I wanted to see it for my self on the bike. From where we were camped it figured it would be about a 30 mile out and back ride.

Kettle River

Is this bad for my bike?
 I was glad to be a little off on the mileage, it was only twelve miles to the spur trail and starting to get really hot. The spur was only about a half mile long and had more mud holes than dry ground. The cool mud and water felt good on my feet and legs, but was not something I was going to swim in, unless I fell in. I thought about getting in the Kettle River when I reached it, the water looked black and very deep. I jammed a stick in it to test the depth, it only went in about a foot. I stepped in and my feet and calves disappeared like it was paint, at that point decided not to go swimming until I got back to camp.  

Check out the dragon fly, or is it a mini UFO?
 The Soo Line Trail was in great shape for the Fargo. I have ridden this trail for hundreds of miles on an ATV from Birch Creek to Superior and in the other direction to Leech Lake, it is usually soft and chunky and not something I would want to ride on any bike. The gravel is very large and could pinch-flat a cyclo-cross tire easily. On this day it was obvious a grader had not been by in a long time, leaving a perfect, well worn two-track, that was fast and smooth for all but the last mile. I have thought about doing a long ride on this trail before, since it's an old railroad grade, it's dead flat, and has horizon-less straightaways, it would be kind of boring but an adventure none the less.

Note the large, tire popping gravel

I felt obligated to collect agates along the way.


  1. Nice agate shot. Kerry and I went to "Agate Beach" the last time we were in the UP and came up empty.

  2. UFO no way....Thats the Chucker....