Getting There
Al Olme
Posted 5/5/2008 12:28 AM (#35432)
Subject: Getting There


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“Half the fun is getting there”, my Mother used to say that when we were on family car trips. I didn’t believe it then, in the 50’s when it took two days just to get all the way out of Florida on the way to anywhere. Now, I have a different view. Getting to, and from, the USCA Rally in Duluth will be a real blast.
If you come from the South or Southeast anything closer than Kansas City, St. Louis, Indianapolis or Columbus you can make the drive in a day. It could be a long day but it’s a day. If you have a bit more time and you’re coming from the SE, you might want to avoid the slab and choose to travel in “61” and its sister roads. You can pick up 61 just a few miles out of Dubuque, IA. Just head north on 151 and take the cut off to Dickeyville, you’re on Hwy 61 now and from here on out it’s pretty much “follow your nose to the rally. In Readstown, Wi you’ll join up with Hwy 14 and wind through Wisconsin’s coulee country up to LaCrosse. I like to cross the river at LaCrosse, take the signs to MN 16 but turn north when you see Hwy 61 immediately west of the river. The ride up the Minneasota side of the Mississippi is glorious. ‘Great scenery and four lanes for all but a short stretch. Places to consider along the way are Slippery’s in Wabasha http://slipperysumr.com/ and maybe a stop in the Redwing pottery complex. The pottery is much smaller than it once was but you can still see pottery demonstrations and shop in the hoard of tiny shops that now occupy to once huge factory http://www.redwingpottery.com .

Next stop, Minneapolis and St. Paul. There are signs everywhere to guide you into Minneapolis and St. Paul and I guess if you’ve never been it’s a fun experience to go to the Mall of America. Yes, it’s every bit as big as you’ve heard folks say. It’s not really the biggest mall in the US; it’s really second and substantially smaller than the West Edmonton Mall in Canada. Still, it’s big enough to wear you out before you can see the whole thing. Yes, there is an amusement park in the center with full size rides. Yes, the Mall makes its own weather, what do you expect, it’s over 4,000,000 square feet of retail space. More than 40 million folks visit the Mall each year, that’s about five times the population of Minnesota. More than 12,000 people work at MOA and that doesn’t count the students that go to the two schools. There is a formidable aquarium in the basement and tons of good places to eat. Oh, and there are over 520 stores. That might be enough but I guess the Mall owners don’t think so. They are planning an expansion that will add 900 more stores.

There’s much more to Minneapolis than the Mall but this is supposed to be a sidecar thing so I’ll skip it for now. Speaking of skipping, you can skip the Twin Cities altogether. When you come up Hwy 61 [remember 61?] and you come into Hastings, just keep going straight. Hwy 61 will join up with Hwy 10 and in 3 or 4 miles you’ll come to SR 95. If you stick with SR 95 it will take you back east a bit and back to a river. This time you’ll be cruising up the St Croix River through Afton, Stillwater and Marine on Croix. But it’s time to get back to Hwy 61 so when you get the SR 97 [2 or 3 miles north of Marine on Croix] hang a left and join back with Hwy 61 just south of Forest Lake.

You’re now running parallel to Interstate 35 as it heads north to Duluth. When you get to Wyoming, MN the road will change to CR 30 and become two lanes but two lanes are more than enough, just follow your nose through north Branch and Rush City. Along the way the road might be called SR 361 or CR 61 but you haven’t turned. When you get to Mission Creek things get interesting for a bit, you cross under the highway and follow CR 61 on north to Hinckley. US Hwy 61 has gone high class and is sharing Interstate 35 now but the side roads will do fine for us.

Hinckley is interesting. This area was the site of a huge forest fire in 1894 that killed more than 400 people. There is a museum that documents the fire and it’s worth a stop if you have the
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akathetroll
Posted 5/9/2008 9:31 PM (#35583 - in reply to #35432)
Subject: RE: Getting There



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Originally written by Al Olme on 5/5/2008 12:28 AM

“Half the fun is getting there”, my Mother used to say that when we were on family car trips.
If you come from the South or Southeast anything closer than Kansas City, St. Louis, Indianapolis or Columbus you can make the drive in a day. I'll see you in Duluth.


But Al, what if I'm not coming from South of somewhere north? I plan to travel Easterly of somewhere west then Northerly of somewhere south which will not be in the US and around a big body of water. Eventually, I will head Southerly of somewhere north after going Westerly of somewhere east. What would you suggest I see from that direction.
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Al Olme
Posted 5/9/2008 11:54 PM (#35589 - in reply to #35583)
Subject: RE: Getting There


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I'm hoping to do at least one more version of this post for folks arriving from the east. Since I didn't figure out your post very well I'm not sure where you're coming from but I hope you have a good trip.

[Seriously, I'd take the ferry]

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hdrghack
Posted 5/10/2008 6:28 AM (#35593 - in reply to #35589)
Subject: RE: Getting There


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My guess is he is comming from the north eh?
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Al Olme
Posted 5/10/2008 1:06 PM (#35595 - in reply to #35593)
Subject: RE: Getting There


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Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
I believe he is Wisconsin in since it says so in his profile. He's planning a trip across the top of the lake by driving up from Camp Douglas and probably joining Gust's merry band of raiders to circumnavigate Superior.

BTW, folks in Michigan are either "Yoopers" or "Tolls" depending on whether they live north or south [under] of the bridge. But the screen name is a red herring [or a "Goofy hat"] he's not a Michigan troll.



Edited by Al Olme 5/10/2008 1:13 PM
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