Assateague National Seashore

Good Man, Mark, Mark’s Lover and I all went to Assateague National Seashore this weekend. The weather was perfect, and really sunny (I wore sunscreen and am still sunburnt). It was a first visit for each of us.

We arrived late Friday night (traffic was terrible) and spent Saturday walking along the shore.

Crossing the Bay Bridge

Footprints

Along the Shore

Feeding

Dunes

His Turf

Remains

We had lunch at a Tex-Mex restaurant and there was a rather large spider hanging out near us.

Close Up

Feeding

Hanging Out

Caught

Good Man Appears to Be Planning Something

Harper’s Ferry National (Historical) Park

A few days ago, we went hiking with Diana’s family at Harper’s Ferry. “Hiking” might be a stretch. It was more like a leisurely nature walk because there’s only so fast you can go with a toddler. As has been my experience everywhere else, as soon as we got a bit away from the parking lots, we were the only ones on the trail.

Even though it wasn’t the hikiest of hikes, we really enjoyed the company and the walk.

(We also bought an annual pass ($80) and this park cost $10, so if we spend $70 more in the year, it was worth the cost.0

Harper’s Ferry

We took the shuttle down to the Lower Town and then walked back to the visitor’s center. Can you see the sign behind the C&O Canal trail?

View from Lower Town

Apparently it was painted sometimes between 1903 and 1906 and reads Mennen’s Borated Talcum Toilet Powder. The NPS site says they tried removing it in the early 60s but it reappeared four years later.

I like the idea of just leaving it. Don’t remove it, don’t restore it, just let it fade naturally.

Sign Detail

Neon Green

Flitting Away

Swallowtail

Bark

Three Seed Pods Floating in the Air

Feeding

Sunning

Tiny Streams

Ferns

Fabric Shelf Covers

I store my fabric in the living room. I know that light can be really detrimental to fabric, and it would be better stored away from light, but I like being able to see all of the fabric. (Had I seen Gertie’s sewing room, I would have completely stolen her idea. I could still get the boxes and use them on my shelves, but at this point, that’s not going to happen.)

I decided to fashion some curtains to cover three sides of my shelves. The backs are uncovered and light can still leak in through the corners and edges, but I am pretty happy with how things turned out!

I used up 5 yards of a heavy weight cotton fabric for this, as well as some cotton ribbon. The fabric buckles a bit in the middle. I need more ribbon to make more ties down the front, but I had already spent an obscene amount on the trim, and my measuring twice cutting once had failed somehow. So I’d yanked out the side seams of the center panels (that’s why the corners aren’t perfect). It took forever to do that, and I was frustrated. I decided perfect was the enemy of good and put the curtains up.

I like how much lighter the shelves feel with the covers on them!

Tall Shelf Curtains

Short Shelf Curtains

Split Rock Lighthouse and Gooseberry Falls State Parks

Good Man and I slept very, very well after our hikes at Temperance River and Tettegouche State Parks.

The following day, we checked out of our B&B, Superior Gateway Lodge. The B&B was incredible, very romantic! It was not right on the water, it was off in the woods. The hosts, Joe and Pat were full of wonderful information (we followed our travel rule and followed their advice), interesting stories, and their breakfasts were amazing! If we ever make it back to Two Harbors, we will stay there again.

Superior Gateway Lodge

Mushrooms

After breakfast, we went to Split Rock Lighthouse State Park. I asked the ranger for a shorter hike, since our legs were sore from the nine miles we’d done the day before, and I was a little worried about my plantar fasciitis kicking back in.

“You like hills?” The ranger jabbed her finger at the map.

I hate hills.

“Sure!” I said, “I love hills.”

(If I always avoid hills, I’ll never get good at hills.)

So Good Man and I headed up to Day Hill. On the way there we passed an island with a land bridge. I pointed to it and proclaimed we’d go there first.

Then we saw this sign.

When it comes to rules made to protect nature, wildlife, or a park, I am a rule follower.

No Access

Happy Good Man

We made it to Day Hill, admired the fireplace, took no photos, enjoyed some trail mix, and then walked along the shore back to our car.

I wanted to dip my toes in the water,

Driftwood

Split Rock

Large Rocks

Edge of the Lake

Cold Feet!

After we finished with Split Rock, we went to Gooseberry Falls. It was so busy! It was too crowded, and we were happy to escape the crowds by moving away from the main falls. We went on a rather nice hike, but I didn’t take many photos.

When we rounded a bend, we saw these plants and I wondered if my vision had suddenly gone haywire. The plants were waving in the wind and my vision couldn’t focus well. I felt like I was in a lenticular image.

Lenticular Plants

Tired, but happy, we finally headed back to my parents’ house for the rest of our visit.

Tettegouche State Park

After Temperance River, we headed south to the next state park, Tettegouche State Park.

We went on a shorter hike at this park, about two miles long to a few different waterfalls.

Forest Floor

Good Man

Over Baptism River there was an extremely rickety looking (and feeling) bridge.

Water Under the Bridge

Baptism River

Bridge Over Baptism River

With Good Man

Two Step Falls

Rainbow Spray

By the end of our hike, we’d hiked nine miles total. I know other people hike a lot more than that in a day, but for us it was a record, and I felt like I had “won.” I felt like I’d beaten the lingering pain from my tailbone injury.

We went to a restaurant recommended by the B&B owners, the Rustic Inn Cafe. While everyone else around us was chatting and laughing, Good Man and I just sat and stared at each other. We were bone tired, but it felt so good.

Temperance River State Park

Our full day along the North Shore, we started off by heading north to Temperance River State Park.

Our hike followed the river at the beginning and was very crowded for the first half mile or so. Once we got past the major waterfalls though, the trail was mostly empty.

Yellow Swallowtails

Temperance River Waterfall

Good Man

Wild Roses

Before we started the hike, I’d asked the ranger about the distance to Carlton peak. He said it was about 2.5 miles to the peak. I wasn’t sure if my back could handle that, but I had my hiking poles with me and wanted to give it a shot.

It was much harder than it should have been. And I whined. Good Man said we should turn around, but I refused to. This would be the longest hike post-tailbone fracture, and I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it.

We got to the peak, rested, ate some snacks, and then…Good Man checked his work email.

At Carlton Peak Lookout

Muddy Boots

Resting at the Peak

Checking Work Email

Sap

Bending Birches

Up the River

Before heading off to another state park, we paused at an outlook to take some photos.

Slow Shutter

Fast Shutter

Happy to Have Reached the Peak

Last View

Hiking Along Minnesota’s North Shore

Good Man and I took a few days to spend some time on the North Shore (of Lake Superior) together. Our first night in Two Harbors, we walked along Sonju Trail, a walking path along the shore.

It was so cold! There was a stiff wind coming off the lake and I had to borrow Good Man’s jacket because I left mine on the farm. I was worried the rest of our visit was going to be just as cold, but I had a long-sleeved shirt, so I knew I could layer during our visit.

Good Man

Lake Superior

On the Shore

Driftwood

Amanda

On the way down to the lighthouse, we came across two deer just off the trail. They were both about 20 feet away. They saw us, flinched, and then went back to eating. (I know the last picture is out of focus, but I just love the look on its face.)

Young Buck

What Are You Looking At?

We walked down to the lighthouse, the ore docks, and found the old railroad tracks.

Railroad

Ore Docks

Good Man

Lily-of-the-Valley

We headed into Duluth to see if we could find a lightweight coat and to have dinner. We were unsuccessful on the coat front and very much looked like visitors since we weren’t running around in shorts! I guess living Not In Minnesota for the past 14 years has really made me lose my cold-weather roots.