After our pool time and lunch back in our condo, we decided to head out on a snowy hike. I must admit that I was less than thrilled about packing all of our snow paraphernalia, but I was glad I did when it enabled us to go on a hike and see a tiny bit of the famous Superior Hiking Trail. It was beautiful and amazingly silent in the woods (if you don't count my less-than-silent kids). The kids loved looking for the blue marks on the trees that confirmed we were still on the right path, and, of course, they loved just playing in the snow along the way.
By the end of the hike, the boys were tired, but still had a burning desire to go throw rocks into the biggest freshwater lake in the world.
That night, Corrie and I made a point to go out on our porch to see the stars over the lake. It was truly one of the most amazing sights I can remember. The darkness of the huge lake contrasted with the bright stars was incredible.
We awoke the next morning to some pancakes prepared by Daddy.
After breakfast, we went back to the pool, where we enjoyed having the whole facility to ourselves. These are the benefits of traveling in the middle of the week in the off season.
We then packed everyone into the van and drove about 30 minutes north, to the town of Grand Marais. We'd heard a lot about this area, and we could definitely see how charming it must be in the summer and fall. We had a good lunch at the Minnesota-famous Sven and Ole's, where Joel and I shared pizza made with (you guessed it) wild rice. Then, we took a walk along the shore and out toward the Grand Marais light house. Finally, we stopped off at the Java Moose for some tasty coffee beverages before heading back to Lutsen.
After some down time back at the condo, we split up for one last adventure. Joel took Corrie on a longer hike up a mountain overlooking the lake, while the boys and I walked along the rocky shoreline and collected some more Lake Superior rocks.
That night we experienced a small tragedy, in that Corrie and I had raved about our star viewing to the boys and encouraged them to stay up to see them. Unfortunately, clouds came in that evening, and there wasn't a star to be seen. Our very tired boys cried and cried when they hopefully ran outside and were completely disappointed. One would think I would have already learned the lesson of not promoting such things until I know with certainty that they are going to happen. Oh well, we now have an excuse to go star gazing again this summer.
The following morning we set off from home with snowflakes falling. Thankfully, it wasn't a terrible storm, and it actually made for quite the beautiful drive.
Now we are home, and eagerly awaiting the arrival of warmer days. Today it was 57! And I actually saw a 70 in our forecast! Dare we hope???