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Biking and Walking Virtually, Mississippi River, Part One, Minnesota

An amusing way to track my miles. Scroll down to start. Entries read from bottom up. Part 1 of 10. [Main Trip page]

Currently MnDNR: Mississippi River State Water Trail

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Logistics. Taking a break from here to finish Fuji, since I don’t seem to be biking it. []

Note to self: next mileage mark 1230RM

October 11, 2021. IRL 1.02. Virtually, passed Plughat Point, finally exiting Lake W, USDA: Plughat Point Boat Area. RM 1231. Total 110 miles.

October 7, 2021. IRL 1.12m. RM 1232. Total 109 miles.

October 6, 2021. IRL 1.11m. RM 1233. Total 108 miles.

Logistics. Stopped keeping track of regular parks.

October 4, 2021. IRL 1.2m SSF. RM 1234. Total 107 miles. []

October 1, 2021. IRL 1.02m Vandiver Park. Virtually, rounded Tamarack Point and passed the entrance to Cut Foot Sioux Lake. RM 1235. Total 106 miles.

September 29 , 2021. IRL 1.22m park near PO, logged as as 1, see yesterday. RM 1236. Total 105 miles.

September 28 , 2021. IRL 1.25m BBG + 0.62m to get lunch -> 1.87, logged as as 2, will do missing mileage today. RM 1237. Total 104 miles.

September 27 , 2021. IRL 3 laps -> 1mile, pasture. Virtually, Lake Winni is biggi. RM 1239. Total 102 miles.

September 26 , 2021. IRL 3 laps -> 1mile, pasture. RM 1240. Total 101 miles.

September 24 , 2021. IRL 1.01, Oak Meadow. RM 1241. Total 100 miles.

September 22 , 2021. IRL 1.04, The Summit. RM 1242. Total 99 miles.

September 21 , 2021. IRL 1.19, The Summit. RM 1243. Total 98 miles.

September 16 , 2021. IRL .63, logged as .5, downtown Homewood, errands, walked the long way around to get total back to even number. RM 1244. Total 97 miles.

September 15 , 2021. IRL 1.04 & 1.69 at BZ, first to Kansas Zoo Virtual Run (walk), second logged as 1.5. RM 1244.5. Total 96.5 miles. []

September 14 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, have entered Lake Winnibigoshish. The Pines Resort: Meet Lake Winnibigoshish. RM 1246. Total 95 miles.

September 12 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. RM 1247. Total 94 miles.

September 10 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. RM 1248. Total 93 miles.

September 9 , 2021. IRL 2.02 miles. Jemison Park, one mile of which counts toward 5th Ave Challenge. RM 1249. Total 92 miles. []

September 8 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, passed Smiling Joe’s campsite. RM 1250. Total 91 miles.

September 7 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, passed Lydick Brook & Meadows rest area. RM 1251. Total 90 miles.

September 6 , 2021. IRL 1.04 miles, Oak Meadow. Virtually, passed Mississippi Meadows. RM 1252. Total 89 miles.

September 5 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. RM 1253. Total 88 miles.

September 4 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, passed Co. Road 33 bridge, Weeks. RM 1254. Total 87 miles.

September 3 , 2021. IRL 1.05 miles, Alabaster Promenade.  RM 1255. Total 86 miles.

September 2 , 2021. IRL 1.1 miles, Oak Meadow, switched to Strava. RM 1256. Total 85 miles.

September 1 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, passed Road 39 bridge, Weeks, designation changes from Scenic to Wild, per MS Headwaters Board. RM 1257. Total 84 miles.

September 0, 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, passed Knutson Dam Rec Area, former dam site, short stretch of rapids, campground & water access, Weeks. RM 1258. Total 83 miles.

“Many of the dams in the Mississippi headwater area were built for logging. Logging companies would save up the spring runoff water, then use it throughout the year to power saws and to float logs downstream. After the logging was over, the dams were used to augment the shipping season by releasing water during the months when the river was normally low.” Weeks: Knutson Dam

August 30 , 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, Cass Lake. RM 1259. Total 82 miles.

August 29, 2021. IRL 1 mile, FCHP. Virtually, Cass Lake, passed Norway Beach, campground & access. RM 1260. 81 Total miles.

Logistics. MnDNR: Mississippi River State Water Trail. End map segment 1. Start map segment 2.

August 28, 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, Cass Lake. RM 1261. Total 80 miles.

August 27, 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, Cass Lake. RM 1262. Total 79 miles.

August 26, 2021. IRL 3 laps. Virtually, Cass Lake, the body of water, not the town. RM 1263. Total 78 miles.

August 23, 2021. IRL 1.08 miles, Shelby County Arts Center. Virtually, Allen’s Bay. RM 1264. Total 77 miles.

August 21, 2021. IRL 1.22 miles, Ross Bridge. Virtually, Potato Islands in Allen’s Bay. RM 1265. Total 76 miles.

August 18, 2021. IRL 1.01 miles, Leeds Memorial Park. Virtually, Allen’s Bay. RM 1266. Total 75 miles.

August 17, 2021. IRL 1.05 miles, Cahaba Heights Park. Virtually, passed the Lake Andrusia carry-in. RM 1267. Total 74 miles.

August 16, 2021. IRL 1.13 miles, Lee Branch. Virtually, in the middle of Lake Andrusia. “Lake Andrusia covers 1,510 acres with 10 miles of wooded shoreline. Minnesota Northwoods: Lake Andrusia. RM 1268. Total 73 miles.

August 15, 2021. IRL 2 laps -> .6 miles, logged as .5 miles, to get back to whole number. RM 1269. Total 72 miles.

August 14, 2021. IRL 1.5 miles, Pepper Place. Virtually, Co Road 8 bridge & power line crossing, bridge info Weeks: Beltrami Co Highway 8 (East Crossing). RM 1269.5. Total 71.5 miles.

August 13, 2021. IRL 1.01 miles, Zaxby’s. Virtually, paddling thru Wolf Lake, scenic photo, Ultimate Fishing Site: Bemidji, MN Fishing, Wolf Lake. RM 1271. Total 70 miles.

August 12, 2021. IRL 1.0 miles, Columbiana. Virtually, High Banks, climb up for scenic view, MRSWT: Snapshot virtual tour. RM 1272. Total 69 miles.

August 9, 2021. IRL 3 laps -> 1 mile. Virtually, Co Road 25, carry-in access. Not a bridge. Road runs next to river. RM 1273. Total 68 miles.

August 7, 2021. IRL 1.01. Virtually, Co Road 8 bridge, bridge info Weeks: Beltrami Co Highway 8 (West Crossing). RM 1274. Total 67 miles.

August 6, 2021. IRL 1.32 miles, Chelsea. Virtually, Island Point Rapids, class 1. ” Class I – Easy. Smooth water; light riffles; clear passages, occasional sand banks and gentle curves.” Paddling.com: Classification of Rapids. RM 1275. Total 66 miles.

August 4, 2021. IRL 3 laps -> 1 mile. RM 1276. Total 65 miles.

August 3, 2021. IRL 1.02 mile. Virtually, Co. Road 12 Dam: portage right 125 yards. Photos, Weeks: Stump Lake Dam & : Beltrami Co Highway 12. RM 1277. Total 64 miles.

Current logistics. Map position & mileage highlights from MnDNR: Mississippi River State Water Trail, Segment 1 – Lake Itasca to Cass Lake, map PDF.

August 2, 2021. IRL 1.06 mile. RM 1278. Total 63 miles.

August 1, 2021. IRL 3 laps, 1.0 mile GPS.  Virtually, passed Stump Lake Campsite. “There is no direct Public access to Stump Lake. Most boaters access Stump Lake via the Mississippi River from Lake Bemidji … There is a remote campsite on Stump accessible by canoe.” Lake-Link: Fish Stump. RM 1279. Total 62 miles.

July 29, 2021. IRL 3 laps -> 1 mile. Virtually, passed the northernmost point of the river. RM 1280. Total 61 miles.

July 27, 2021. IRL 1.15 miles. Avondale Park. RM 1281. Total 60 miles.

July 24, 2021. IRL 1.03 miles. Oak Meadow Park. RM 1282. Total 59 miles.

July 20, 2021. IRL 1.03 miles. Meadowlawn Park. RM 1283. Total 58 miles.

July 19, 2021. IRL 5 laps, 1.25 miles. Oak Meadow. Virtual, cross under Paul Bunyan State Trail (a bike path, Weeks) & Co Road 19 Bridge (Weeks). RM 1284. Total 57 miles.

July 14, 2021. IRL 1.08 miles. Columbiana. Virtual, Lake Bemidji, paddling directly across the lake is not recommended. RM 1285. Total 56 miles.

July 13, 2021. IRL 1.14 miles. Cahaba Lilly Park. Virtual, City of Bemidji. RM 1286. Total 55 miles.

July 9, 2021. IRL 2 laps ~> est 1+ mile. Chelsea. Virtual, submerged pilings, Lake Irving carry-in. RM 1287. Total 54 miles.

July 7, 2021. IRL 1.01 miles, Columbiana. Virtual, cross under US Hwy 2/Yellowhead road. RM 1288. Total 53 miles.

Weeks: US Highway 2, US Highway 71
Longer bridge
“Like other Mississippi River headwaters bridges, this bridge[Fern Lake] sees very little traffic, less than 100 vehicles per day. This is the last of the lightly traveled bridges while heading downriver. The next bridge at Jefferson Road sees 2500 vehicles a day, and the US-2 crossing after that sees nearly 10,000 vehicles a day.” Weeks: FLRB

July 6, 2021. IRL three laps -> 1 mile. From here on, assume sans horse, unless mentioned otherwise. Virtual, river mile 1289. Just passed the Silver Maple campsite. This puts me well to the west of where I “was” when using roads. Haven’t even hit Lake B yet. Total 52 miles.

Weeks: Fern Lake Road Bridge RM 1294
Weeks: Co Road 11/Jefferson Ave SW RM 1290.2
Two similar looking, small, flat, concrete bridges.

Procedural note. As of July 6, switching back to river miles. Will be of more virtual interest than random backroads of Minnesota. Book route might have been more riveting if I were doing 10+ miles  a day rather than 1. OTOH, point of virtual tour is Mississippi River not RBs of Mn. Using –  MnDNR: Mississippi River State Water Trail

Upper river miles count down from 1341.6. I’m going to assume a 1/2 mile in there somewhere & use whole numbers, i.e. 1341 – total = river mile marker.

Ending this. As of June 1, virtual mileage based on Bicycling Guide To The Mississippi River Trail: A Complete Route Guide Along The Mississippi River, Robinson (Spirits Creek 2008). 

June 30, 2021. IRL 1.06 miles. Odenville City Park. Virtual, same. Total 51 miles. [Things, photo]

June 28, 2021. IRL 1.05 miles. Heardmont Park. Virtual, Roosevelt Road. Total 50 miles.

June 16, 2021. IRL one lap -> .3 mile. Solo. Choice btwn 1 or 4 laps, in order to get back to round number. Long day, not for any good reason, stopped at one. Virtual, same. Total 49 miles.

June 15, 2021. IRL 1.7 miles.
Wed 9. 1 lap =-> .3m. Muddy. Toe not up to footing.
Thur 10. 1 loop at Hoover Dog Park -> .4 miles per sign (2.5 loops = 1 mile).
Tues 15. IRL three laps -> 1 mile. Solo.
Virtual Swenson Road/CR 27.
Total 48.7 miles.

June 7, 2021. IRL three laps -> 1 mile. Solo. Virtual, same. Total 47 miles.

June 2, 2021. IRL three laps -> 1 mile. Solo. Virtual, same. Total 46 miles.

June 1, 2021. IRL three laps -> 1 mile. Solo. Virtual, Power Dam Road, Bemidji, p15.  Internet says I am vheading east from Lake B. Total 45 miles.

Virtual mileage based on Bicycling Guide To The Mississippi River Trail: A Complete Route Guide Along The Mississippi River, Robinson (Spirits Creek 2008).  Never found other one. Bought second  copy

Interim. Finished virtual walking of LEJOG. Plans. Virtual bike, Great Ocean Road II, Fuji part 1. Virtual walk, Fuji part 2. Then all mileage logged here. May start an ongoing, DIY Waterways of the World project. Be a long time before I run out of mileage.

January 31, 2021 Biking. IRL 15 km, short railroad, there & back. 5.8 applied to Great Ocean Road. 9.2 km -> 5.71 miles. 5 applied here. Total 44 miles. [GOR ride journal, ride post pending]

October 30, 2020. Added Nov 23. Walking. Buck Creek Trail, 2 miles. Total 39 miles. Looks like these did not get logged anywhere. Virtually, heading north along the shore of Lake B.

***Pausing on the virtual shore of Lake Bimidji*** Taking a break to switch miles to Virtual Challenge medals. The plan, because there always has to be a plan, is to virtually walk the Land’s End to John O’ Groats challenge and to bike the Great Ocean Road challenge. After that, I will come back to virtually biking the Mississippi Great River Road. Makes more sense to vwalk the 1000 miles and vbike the 3000 miles. Not sure if I will vwalk another challenge or come back here. It’ll be a while. Subject to change as the mood strikes.

October 29, 2020. Today 2 laps .66 miles. Total 37 miles. Virtually, heading east on same.

October 28, 2020. Today 1 miles. Total 36.5 miles. Chelsea Recreational Park, .75(?)-mile paved walking trail with woods & hills. Virtually, south of lake Bimidji,heading NE on Old Paul Bunyan State Trail/Highway 12.

October 27, 2020. Today 1.5 miles. Total 35.5 miles. Excess mileage from this week’s bling walk, [Baltimore]. Virtually, on the south shore of Lake Bemidji. Passed the statues of Paul Bunyan & Babe the Blue Ox, “Both were conceived as a tribute to the lumber industry, Bemidji’s principal employer at the time.” Roadside America: Boxy Bunyan and Babe Statues.

October 26, 2020. Today three laps. Total 34 miles. Virtually, left unto 5th St NW.

October 22, 2020. Today one lap+.75 miles. Total 33 miles. Virtually, turned right. Heading east on Division Street W.

October 21, 2020. Today one lap. Total 32 miles. Virtually, Highway 7.

October 20, 2020. Today 1.7 miles. Total 31.7 miles. Excess mileage from this week’s bling walk, [Queen Bee]. Virtually, Highway 7.

October 19, 2020. Today 3 laps, 1 mile. Total 30 miles. Virtually, continuing on Highway 7 until mile 33. Imagine having the Mississippi River in your backyard.

October 16, 2020. Today 2 laps. Total walk 29 miles. Virtually, still on Highway 7, zig-zagging north & east toward Lake Bemidji. Am on west side of river, which is also zig-zagging northeast.

October 14, 2020. Today 1 lap.

October 13, 2020. Today 2 laps, ~.6 rounding down to .4. Total walk 28 miles. Virtually, this puts me on Highway 7/Becida Road SW, heading east, just about to cross the river. Weeks: Bridge, Beltrami Co Highway 7

***Switching to following roads rather than river***
A) Far greater likelihood that I would ever drive or bike part of this route than take to a canoe. B) I can identify more with what I see on a road map. Using Great River Road app & Create My Route until I can find my copy of the biking book.

October 12, 2020. Today 1 lap. Total walk 27.6 miles. RM 1314.

October 10, 2020. Today 2 laps.

October 9, 2020. Today 2 laps. Total walk 26.6 miles. RM 1315.

October 7, 2020. Today 1 lap.

October 6, 2020. Today 2 laps. Total walk 25.6 miles. RM 1316.

October 5, 2020. Today 1 lap.

September 30, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 24.6 miles. Gorgeous day. Sights along the river, —-. RM 1317.

September 29, 2020. Today 5K, Oak Meadows Park. Total Walk 23.6. Inaugural weekly 5K. When I don’t have a bling walk, will apply miles here. Counted as 3 miles to make up for times when laps might fall short. Sights along the river, end Stumphges Rapids, Forest Road Bridge. RM 1318.

September 24, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 20.6 miles. Shared the last half lap with remnants of TS Beta. Sights along the river, end wetlands & possible vegetation obstructions, start Stumphges Rapids. RM 1321.

September 19, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 19.6 miles. Sights along the river —. RM 1322.

September 18, 2020. Today 6 laps = 2 miles. Handwalk horses, 3 laps each. Total walk 18.6 miles. Sights along the river, Brownie campsite. RM 1323.

September 17, 2020. Today 6 laps = 2 miles. Handwalk horses, 3 laps each. Total walk 16.6 miles. Sights along the river, Coffee Pot Landing, La Salle Creek confluence, entering wetland area. RM 1325.

Weeks, Bridge Photography: Snowmobile Bridge At Coffee Pot Landing. Different river mileage than MNDNR.

September 16, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 14.6 miles. Sights along the river, power line crossing. RM 1327.

September 15, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 13.6 miles. RM 1328.

September 14, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 12.6 miles. Sights along the river, County Road 40 bridge. RM 1329.

Weeks, Bridge Photography: Clearwater Co Highway 40, Weeks says bridge is at river mile 1333.1; map from the Minnesota Dept of Natural Resources says 1329.2.

September 12, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 11.6 miles. RM 1330.

September 11, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 10.6 miles. Sights along the river, end Vekin’s Dam rapids, County Road 2 bridge. RM 1331.

September 10, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 9.6 miles. RM 1332.

September 9, 2020. Today 3 laps of university green = 1 mile. Total walk 8.6 miles. Sights along the river, County Road 37 bridge. RM 1333.

Weeks, Bridge Photography: Clearwater Co Highway 37, Weeks says bridge is at river mile 1338; map from the Minnesota Dept of Natural Resources says 1333.2.

September 8, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 7.6 miles. Sights along the river, Vekin’s Dam, start of rapids. RM 1334.

September 2, 2020. Today 2 laps = 0.6 mile. Total walk 6.6 miles. New plan. Another two laps to tack .6 onto total. Now, walk mileage is uneven, but stopping points coincide with mileage numbers on the map. Why is life so untidy!?! Sights along the river, bridges. River mile 1335.

Weeks, Bridge Photography: Feil Bridge
Weeks, Bridge Photography: Larson’s Bridge Ruins
Weeks, Bridge Photography: Larson’s Culvert
Weeks, Bridge Photography: The Richard Felt Bridge

September 0, 2020. Today 2 laps = 0.59 mile. Total walk 6 miles. Two laps is ~2/3 mile. Calling it .59 to round up the walk mileage. That .6 at the start is going to annoy my sense of order. RM 1335.6.

August 29, 2020. Today 2.41 miles. Total walk 5.41 miles. Hike in state park w/ dog. Sights along the river, Wanagan Landing. RM 1336.19.

August 26, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 3 miles. RM 1338.6.

August 24, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 2 miles. Sights along the river, Gulsvig Landing Boat Launch. RM 1339.6.

August 17, 2020. Today 3 laps = 1 mile. Total walk 1 mile. Sights along the river, portage for County Road 38 culvert. RM 1340.6.

Day one. A long – loooong – project for my walks. One of the sites says that a drop of water takes 90 days to get from Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico. Given how seldom I walk these days, this could take years.

Since this is a casual project, I’m estimating the miles based on the route, in today’s case by laps of the pasture. Not gonna carry a GPS an obsess about 100ths of a mile, or probably even 10ths.

Speaking of pasture, unspecified location =  walking around pasture. 3 laps – 1 mile.

Sights along the River
MN Dept of Natural Resources: Mississippi River State Water Trail Snapshot Tour
MN Dept of Natural Resources: Mississippi River State Water Trail, segment 1, Lake Itasca to Cass Lake, PDF of map

Itasca State Park

“There is a small stone walkway you can use to hop your way across the river, or a large wooden walkway if you don’t want to get wet. But if you are really feeling adventurous, hike right across the only three feet deep Mississippi just to say you did it!” The Outbound: Walk Across the Mississippi River in Itasca SP. Gorgeous photo.

More photos of people walking across the Mississippi riverlet.
Kinda Different: Roots Roasting; Brewed Awakenings

Twelve Mile Circle: Walk Across the Mississippi River

Explore Minnesota: A Trip North To The Mississippi Headwaters
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Mississippi River
Great River Road
Mississippi River Trail

Part One – Minnesota
Part Two – Minnesota & Wisconsin
Part Three – Iowa & Wisconsin
Part Four – Iowa & Illinois
Part Five – Missouri & Illinois
Part Six – Missouri & Kentucky
Part Seven – Missouri, Arkansas & Tennessee
Part Eight – Arkansas & Mississippi
Part Nine – Louisiana & Mississippi
Part Ten – Louisiana

 

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