Minnesota Trip: Day 3, Thursday

Spending the night in the car at a CENEX truck stop is probably more fun in your 20s. But when you can’t get a motel room after trying for about an hour — and you’ve been in a major thunderstorm and are tired and it’s late — you do what you have to do.

In the ladies room at the restaurant across from CENEX, I get to explain to two women from Alberta that the “wah-wah-wah” sound they heard last night (“Was it a tornado warning?” was the emergency warning system announcing the thunderstorm. They spent the night in their truck instead of their tents. We’re all tidying up; no shower but large sinks!

After a hearty breakfast, off we go, across the plains, headed to Duluth MN. We got a great motel on Lake Superior; once we got into Minnesota, the iPhone was able to access data fairly reliably and I found a “deal” using Orbitz. (Finding pet-friendly places can still be a challenge.)

Dickinson, ND to Superior, WI. (Google Mapthe trip summary page)

Horse Lodging
We could have spent the night in the barn! This stable was part of the motel/camping/restaurant complex across from CENEX.
Horse Lodging
Horse Lodging Has Vacancies (But Lots Of Mosquitoes)
Long Shot : World’s Largest Holstein Cow – New Salem, ND
Mike looks teeny next to the cow!
Salem Sue looks a little fierce!
Looking out over her domain.
We stop at a Target in Bismark and get a USB cable; AT&T says “E” but Safari says “not connected.” The story of this trip: data access is almost non-existent.
Highway Sign
When you see them side-by-side, the Minnesota state road and U.S. Interstate signs look distinctly different. But the color and font similarity will cause a doubletake when the state road sign is solo. Trust me. Color seems to trump shape, at least in my brain.
Mississippi River
Mississippi River Sign
Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is small and tranquil this far north.
Mississippi River
Mississippi River
Katie’s enjoying the break from the car.
co-op sign
There’s agriculture but we don’t see dairy farms.
GPS Lakes
But we do see evidence of lakes – on the GPS. Trees alongside the road block the view, in the main. Montana was more interesting from the car than Minnesota!
warning sign
No swimming in this part of Lake Superior (Barker’s Island)
no swimming
I Told You : No Swimming!
Lake Superior - Dirty
Then there’s the small matter of water being, umm, disgusting.

NOTE: unless otherwise noted, these photos are taken with a Nikon Coolpix L5 and have not been retouched. See photos from the trip at Flickr.

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