Saturday, May 11, 2013

Headwaters of the MIssissippi and SNOW

Day 4 - Detroit Lakes to Itasca State Park -  69.5 miles

We woke up bright and early, packed...forgot our treasured gatorade in the fridge at our Warmshowers Host and set off for Itasca State Park where the Mississippi River begins its long journey to the Gulf of Mexico.  We enjoyed a wonderful day of cycling - low wind, sun, no traffic and gently rolling hills.  Miike and Jean gave us route advice - greatly appreciated.

We arrived at Itasca early in the afternoon and explored the Visitor Centre...awesome!  We found a campsite, and purchased some fire wood.  The wood was almost a deal breaker when  we were told it was a 3 mile ride to our campsite....I almost cried at the thought of adding more weight to our bikes.  I think the Parks staff sensed my dismay because they kindly offered to drop the wood off for us at our site later in the day - MINNESOTA NICE!

Before we set up camp we were lured to cycle another few miles to see the headwaters....amazing!  We learned that a drop of rain falling in to Lake Itasca will take 90 days to make it to the Gulf of Mexico - GAME ON!  We both spit into Lake Itasca (just a little spit :) )  Our challenge....to beat our spit to the Gulf!

Headwaters of the Mississippi River


Only 2552 Miles to the Gulf of Mexico


Itasca State Park

Kudos to the Minnesota crew for the wonderful Interpretive Centres they have developed at Itasca State Park!

We settled in to enjoy a fire, a glass of champagne (a gift from our Amtrak attendant) and dinner.....and then it started to snow!  We quickly scampered in to the tent as a storm rolled in and fell asleep to the sound of the ice on the lake cracking and trees swaying......

Giggle of the day:


WHO KNEW ??




View Bicycling directions to Itasca State Park, Park Rapids, MN, United States in a larger map