Thursday, July 5, 2012

Trip To Grand Marais, MN (part 2)

Tara and I woke up early Saturday morning to that we could go for a run before moving on to the rest of our day's festivities. We decided that our best bet was to go running in one direction down the highway, then turn around and head back when we wanted to be half-way done. Running down the highway might not sound like the most exciting place to run, but the views along the lakeshore were amazing. We ended up running about 4 miles and into a state forrest and over some formidable hills before turning back.

We were starting to get hungry by this point, and we had already decided the night before where to get breakfast: World's Best Donuts! We looked at the clock and saw that it was 7 am, meaning the donut shop had just opened and would have piping hot, fresh donuts. Without taking time to shower, we jumped in the car and headed into Grand Marais.

Eagerly waiting for donuts at 7 am
Tara posing in their cut out
Me posing in their cut out

After sharing three very satisfying donuts and scoring some sweet souvenirs, we explored what little of Grand Marais was open and undiscovered. There are a few neat antique shops in Grand Marais, and we amused ourselves by looking through all the cool stuff the shops had and ended up talking ourselves out of buying a lot of stuff we have no room for at the moment.
Hat I picked out for Tara
Hat Tara picked out for me
We checked the weather and saw that it a thunderstorm was coming our way so we headed back to the lodge, packed some water and started on what became our two hour hike. We chose to start on the path alongside the creek by the restaurant and continued to walk all the creek until the path forked. Luckily they had numerous checkpoints, each with posted maps so we always knew (or thought we knew) where we were going. By looking at the map we decided we wanted to climb to the top of one of the mountains called Lookout Mountain. Somehow we ended up getting off the hiking path and onto the cross country ski path. The only difference between the two was the ski path was full of tall grass and really muddy ground and made our hike quite the adventure.
Starting on our hike
Posing with the creek behind us
One of the many maps along the trail
Tara's "almost to the top" pose
We were almost to the top of the mountain when we heard thunder, but decided we wanted to take our chances and continue on with our hike. The views were absolutely amazing at the top and even though the thunder was getting louder, we stopped for awhile to take it all in.When we got back to the hotel, we weren't quite ready to head inside and the rain hadn't yet started. Across the highway from our hotel there was nice access to the rocky shore of Lake Superior. We walked down some stairs and found ourselves in a beautiful place to take in the morning. It was only 11:30 in the morning at this time and we decided that we needed a little down time. So we returned to our room to relax.
View from the top of Lookout Mountain
Us excited we made it to the top
Lunchtime came soon, so back into Grand Marais we went. I knew exactly where I wanted us to eat: Hughies Tacos. This Mexican restaurant was located a short distance away from the shore. It is safe to say that we ate to our hearts' content as we left the restaurant absolutely stuffed.
Hanging in our booth at Hughie's
After lunch we walked around Grand Marais and checked out the few stores we hadn't yet explored, including the cute little co-op. Then we headed back to our car and drove around the residential part of the town, something we like to do in touristy cities. The temperature was starting to drop when we made our way back into town so we stopped by Java Moose again and ordered some hot water and delicious Japanese Sencha.

It was nearing 8 pm and getting dark but we still weren't hungry so we ordered dinner from My Sister's Place to go and took it back to our room for later. that turned out to be a good idea, because the storm hit less than 10 minutes after we returned to the lodge. So we headed downstairs to the lobby area to play trivial pursuit and watch the storm over the lake before calling it a night.

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