I'm joining up again with my fellow Minnesotans to highlight places we've explored in our state this past month. Be sure to click the link at the bottom of the post to follow the circle around.
This month I met up with fellow photographer, Carrie Bayless, for an entire weekend in Duluth. I'd only known Carrie online so it was great to meet her face to face and hang out with her and her kids. My husband and daughter tagged along and we agreed that we had a fantastic time. We've been to Duluth many times, but never shy away from a chance to visit Duluth and the North Shore. While a number of the spots we've visited on this weekend we'd been to previously, but we were able to explore new places as well. We packed in a lot this weekend - more than I have in previous visits and was so grateful to have other people who were willing to do so with us.
Our first stop found us meeting at Spirit Mountain. I'm not big on alpine slides and the such, but I know my family loves this stuff. While there, they enjoyed the alpine slide, the zip line, and the scenic chair lift (which I joined them on). We thought about sticking around for more, but to be honest it was a bit hotter than expected so we went on to our next spot, Enger Tower.
Enger Tower provides panoramic views over Lake Superior and is a must see at least one time you visit Duluth (I've been twice). After climbing to the top of the tower, we explored the Japanese Peace Garden and the walking paths before heading out to dinner.
After checking into the hotel we decided to head down to Canal Park to eat dinner and explore. We've been there plenty of times, but this was the first time we walked over the bridge and adventured on the other side as well.
To wrap up our day we found a little beach and the kids splashed around in the cold Lake Superior water. My daughter ended up soaking wet and wishing she had her bathing suit, but she was one happy kid and didn't seem to mind the cold.
That night we also drove over to Brighten Beach to get pictures of the stars, but mine didn't turn out. I had big plans of getting up early on this trip for a sunrise shot, but my sleep was too precious to me to get up that early. I guess I'll leave the sunrises to someone else.
Instead, after sleeping in ever so slightly, we took a drive an hour north to Gooseberry Falls. It was no surprise that there were a ton of people visiting this popular destination as it was a beautiful weekend, but it was surprising that I was able to capture some pictures with only Riley in them.
After eating a quick lunch we headed north again to Split Rock Lighthouse.
One of my favorite things to do at Split Rock is walk down to the beach and hang out on the rocks where I can watch my daughter throw pebbles into the water.
And then we headed further north up to Palisade Head for another spectacular view before heading back to Duluth for dinner and an early bed time after a very active day.
On the last morning we decided that we wanted to beat the traffic home so we took off on our own and stopped at Jay Cooke State Park for one last adventure. I'd been impressed with my 7 year old's ability to pack in so much activity this weekend, but this is about the time it all broke down. This was a fun visit, but it was peppered with moments of complete breakdown followed by energetic highs by my kid. Still, Riley deserves a big kudos for her over all adventurous spirit this weekend... and while were at it, kudos to my fellow introverted husband for agreeing to a weekend with strangers.
And that was our big adventure for the month of August. I've never Duluth'd so hard before, but boy did we have a good time.
Make sure to check out the talented Carrie Bayless to see her take on our trip to Duluth.