I headed west from the shore of Lake Superior but had to dry some hiking socks first.
Spent the fourth of July at Bear Head Lake.
And treated myself to a decadent breakfast.
See, I don't always eat tacos...more on that topic later.
Stopped at a rainy McCarthy Beach State Park and cleverly found a way to keep my firewood dry.
I am nothing if not resourceful.
Case in point, it was time for a tire rotation.
I veered a little northwest, passing by the grave of Paul Bunyan. And a classic sign.
Minnesota shares a lake with Ontario, Canada, called Lake of the Woods.
I had planned to stay at Zippel Bay State Park but it was a little damp and cold so kept driving.
Past some pretty yellow flowers.
All the way to Lake Bronson State Park, one of my favorites. I found a nice lakeside spot.
Which I ended up sharing with other campers who needed a place to store their toys.
Resourceful and nice. Yep, that's me.
Heading southwest I realized that it was time to wash my car. And do some laundry. And maybe add some color to my pasty white skin.
I stopped at Lake Bemidji which had a really cool sign.
As well as some pesky critters.
Journeyed on to the first state park in Minnesota and walked across the Mississippi River.
It was not all that hard to do.
But a neat accomplishment.
I visited several other western campgrounds in the state and then did a 500 mile drive to Badlands National Park in South Dakota.
I only stopped three times. Twice for gas and once to check out the world's largest pheasant.
That is the stuff you see by staying off the interstates. Love it.
I nabbed site number 40 beneath the largest of the three trees in the campground.
With an OK view...
This is a beautiful park. Most folks just take the loop road off the highway and only spend an hour or two driving through it. I spent two nights and got to see my first Bighorn Sheep and many spectacular views.
This was the sunrise as I departed.
That is from the campground.
Shadows appear and disappear as the sun crosses the sky, completely changing the look of the hills. This is typical in desert settings and is why you need to spend at least a full day in them if you want to photograph it properly.
Next stop was Custer State Park.
I happened to arrive there during Bike Week. Not bicycles. Ones with motors.
What I really wanted to see were some buffalo since I was shut out at Blue Mounds State Park in Minnesota. I found some.
Little did I know how prevalent they would become.
I drove through some very narrow tunnels.
And got winked at by a wild Burro.
I spent my last night at Sylvan Lake Campground, the most popular of the nine ones there.
I did a big loop through Wyoming and passed by Devil's Tower.
I really like that photo and so did the locals.
I wound up at another popular park. You might have heard of it.
You have to practice bear-proof storage here and I happily complied.
I was excited to see my first bunch of buffalo at Custer, but by now they simply became roadblocks with attitudes.
I spent two weeks here taking photos of over 2000 individual campsites. And some other stuff.
I passed through Grand Teton National Park on my way west.
I met a foxy lady.
And saw the Grand Tetons.
Passing through Nevada, I spent some time in the Mammoth Lakes area and then stopped at Pinecrest Lake in California.
It was a little wet but using my wayback machine (I forget what old cartoon that was from. I think there was a dog wearing glasses. Mr. Peabody or something) and took this photo from a sunny summer day in 2005.
Wonderful campground. Highly recommended.
Stopping by Lassen National Volcanic Park on my way to the coast, I saw evidence of the fire damage that precluded me from taking pictures here last year.
I hit the coast and visited several campgrounds in the redwoods.
As I have mentioned before, I am a Canadian. Left Toronto when I was five and hitch-hiked to West Vancouver where I lived for ten years. Then more time spent in Oregon and Vancouver Island later on. So I am use to the northwest climate. The rain is what makes everything so green and vibrant.
That is why I really like this photo of a site post at Del Norte Redwoods.
Saw some neat stuff heading down the coast.
A million birds.
A nice wave.
I had the honor of meeting several people on this trip who recognized me from my blog. A nice couple in Yellowstone stopped by and we talked about my mishap with the trailer and my bike. You know who you are. Thank you for the kind words.
I have also been asked if all I really eat is tacos. Well, that is not true. Not really.
I was going to have some when I picked up the trailer from Glenn to start the trip. But he ate them all.
Well, maybe I ate them a few more times...
Well, hardly ever. But I will say this. A taco breakfast on the shore of a lake cannot be beat.
But what about fruit or veggies you ask? Aside from the stuff on the tacos?
Got it covered.
I am all about a balanced diet.
We are in the planning stages of next year's trip. Let me correct that. I mean years in the plural sense.
Regards, Park Ranger