0 miles : 524 miles total
My in-laws rock!!! Really, I have the best in-laws EVER! Mike and I had an awesome rest day hanging with his parents. We got up late-ish and welcomed the day with a beautiful morning view of Lake Superior, complemented with Judy’s blueberry pancakes, real maple syrup, and good strong coffee. Dysfunctional families may make the news and reality tv, but it is such a joy to have family whom you not only love, but really enjoy spending time with. We spend so much time with my family that it is a joy and treat to have time with David and Judy. And they spoil us so!
But not to the point of doing laundry, so first things first (because stinky sweaty biking jerseys and shorts needed some serious attention, not to mention hot water and soap), Mike and I drove into Two Harbors to do laundry. Functional laundromat obliged, although Mike once again ended up with $20 dollars in quarters. Note to self and any other long haul biker, laundromats these days seem to be good places to get free wi-fi. Other good spots we have found include public libraries, the obvious cafe, and Super 8 hotels.
Upon our return, I found myself hungry enough to start gnawing on an arm bone. Luckily for me, Judy quickly laid out a feast that included left over eggplant Parmesan, smoked trout, salmon dip, chips and salsa, pretzels, crackers and cheese, and Michigan peaches. We ate until there was nothing left. I swear I ate more for lunch on the rest day than I do when biking– but it really hit the spot.
From there, we four drove into Duluth to do a few more chores and take a look around. We went down to the canal and checked out the Aerial Lift Bridge. Originally built in 1905, it had a suspended trolley car that could carry horses, carriages, cars and people across the 300 foot span in about 2.5 minutes. A decade or so later, they raised the span at the top 42 feet and converted the bridge to a lift. Now the entire 300 foot or so span rises and is lowered in order to allow the boats clear passage into the harbor. It is pretty cool to see.
We stopped at Grandmas to have their famous onion rings (which were thick and quite delicious) and got to see a Canadian freighter, the Michipocoten, arrive earlier than posted. We had a great view as the bridge rose to its limit to allow the old ship to pass beneath it.
After Grandmas, Mike and I strolled across the span. My only wish is that they would allow pedestrians to ride the bridge as it goes up and down. Now that would have been cool!
From there we checked out the spit that the canal isolated and turned to an island. We got brave enough to dip out feet into the water at the beach. BRRRRRRRR!
To make our rest day even more special, David and Judy treated us to a lovely birthday dinner at a nearby place called the Scenic Cafe. The place is warm and friendly, unpretentious but with some lovely food. We shared a seared ahi sashimi-avocado “taco” where the “taco” was fried wantons. The best was a fresh peach caprese salad that both Judy and I had. It was like a salad and dessert.
Then off we went back to the cabin for a campfire on the rocks, a s’more and a smudge of scotch before heading off to bed to rest before our next adventure.
Thanks David and Judy, for making this trip something special and more social than bike tours usually are! We are so grateful that Judy is doing well and David is retired. We are looking forward to many fun times together!