5 Training Tips for Your Next Hiking or Backpacking Trip!

Spring is the time of year when everything returns to life (and gets real muddy). Even though I like to hike year round, I need a little reboot when the snow thaws. This post covers some of the ways I physically and mentally prepare myself for hiking and backpacking. Be sure you get the green … Continue reading 5 Training Tips for Your Next Hiking or Backpacking Trip!

Campsgiving at William O’Brien State Park

We're back from an refreshing Thanksgiving weekend trip to William O'Brien State Park! It's been a while since I've had a cold weather overnight and it was great to dust off the skills and gear to extend the camping season. This 3 in 1 post covers: Our Free Park Friday/Opt Outside group hike on the … Continue reading Campsgiving at William O’Brien State Park

Fall Camping and Hiking at Temperance River State Park

We're back from our last family camping trip of the year and the camper has been a great way to spend time together, extend the season and have some of the comforts of home. Our dog eats tents, so it's also been nice to have a way to bring her along! Temperance River State Park … Continue reading Fall Camping and Hiking at Temperance River State Park

Hiking Southern Minnesota | Upper Sioux Agency and Camden State Parks

Welcome to part 2 of my trip report, featuring FOUR more Minnesota State Parks! In 2014, my buddy April and I started hiking the Minnesota State Parks Hiking Club trails. Even though we live in different states now, we still manage to pull off one or two camping trips a year. Read her trip report … Continue reading Hiking Southern Minnesota | Upper Sioux Agency and Camden State Parks

Hiking Southern Minnesota | Big Stone Lake and Lac qui Parle State Parks

Welcome to part 1 of our trip to 4 more Southern Minnesota State Parks! It was great to be back on the trail with my first hiking buddy, and visit 4 new parks - painting and capturing my favorite things along the way. Find out how long Big Stone Lake really is, and stay tuned for part 2, where we visit Upper Sioux Agency and Camden State Parks. Happy Trails!

McCarthy Beach State Park

Welcome to day 2 of our trip to 4 North Central Minnesota State Parks! We used our new camper as a relaxing home base for exploring neighboring parks and I'm excited to get back to my goal of hiking ALL of the Minnesota State Park Hiking Club Trails. Have you been to McCarthy Beach State Park? Be sure to hit subscribe or check back to see more paintings from the trail, and hear more about a 300 year old pine tree and a belching bog!

Hiking and Camping at Scenic State Park

We're back from a great trip to 4...count 'em, F O U R North Central Minnesota State Parks! We used our new camper as a relaxing home base for exploring neighboring parks and I'm excited to get back to my goal of hiking all of the Minnesota State Park Hiking Club Trails. Have you been to Scenic State Park? Be sure to hit subscribe or check back to see more paintings from the trail, and hear more about a 300 year old pine tree and a belching bog! Hope you are having a wonderful end of Summer and are looking forward to cooler temps and the colors of Fall.

Hiking Merit Badge 20 Miler | Minneapolis Parks

HIKE DETAILS LENGTH 20 milesDIFFICULTY mostly flat and paved, with dirt options and a few hillsDATE HIKED October 4, 2020MAIN FEATURES Grand Rounds Scenic Byway, Theodore Wirth Park, Chain of Lakes. Start location - 2601 Theodore Wirth Parkway:  Sunset Park Last week, some friends and I backpacked the 35ish mile Sioux Hustler Trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. It … Continue reading Hiking Merit Badge 20 Miler | Minneapolis Parks

Family Glamping at Lake Bemidji State Park

This post highlights our family trip to Lake Bemidji State Park and its Hiking Club Trail, Itasca State Park, the iconic Paul & Babe Statue and some musings on glamping in a sweet little camper we rented through Outdoorsy. Hope you enjoy! Glamping glamp·ing/ˈɡlampiNG/nouna form of camping involving accommodation and facilities more luxurious than those … Continue reading Family Glamping at Lake Bemidji State Park

Hiking Southern Minnesota – Part 2: Pipestone National Monument, Split Rock Creek and Lake Shetek State Parks

Continued from part 1: Kilen Woods, Fort Ridgely and Blue Mounds State Parks! The prairie has a unique beauty and history that I am still learning more about. I'm also realizing the importance of knowing our history, in order to learn from it and avoid repeating it. So, if you are like me, and history … Continue reading Hiking Southern Minnesota – Part 2: Pipestone National Monument, Split Rock Creek and Lake Shetek State Parks

Hiking Southern Minnesota | Part 1: Kilen Woods, Fort Ridgely and Blue Mounds State Park

Garden Update! The garden is bursting and these late summer days are filled with working at home and in the yard. I'm writing this post on a family trip to another beautiful MN State Park, in a cute little rental camper, early in the morning while everyone is still asleep. No work or chores for … Continue reading Hiking Southern Minnesota | Part 1: Kilen Woods, Fort Ridgely and Blue Mounds State Park

Minnesota North Shore Weekend! Part 2: Tettegouche State Park, Superior Hiking Trail and a BEAR at camp!

Continued from Part 1... Split Rock to Beaver Bay TRIP DETAILS LENGTH 11 miles:  camped at Tettegouche State ParkDIFFICULTY Moderate, elevation and sun exposureDATE August 9, 2020MAIN FEATURES Classic Superior Hiking Trail up and down elevation with spectacular views of Lake Superior.  We parked a car in the rear lot of Cove Point Lodge, which connects directly to a 2 … Continue reading Minnesota North Shore Weekend! Part 2: Tettegouche State Park, Superior Hiking Trail and a BEAR at camp!

Lake Superior North Shore Weekend! Part 1: Temperance River State Park

Last weekend's garden harvest This has been a year of adjusting and re-adjusting, and there are days that I'd rather just turn this into a page about gardening. In many ways, this shift has been good for me... causing me to find ways to enjoy a deeper and more intentional life close to home. My … Continue reading Lake Superior North Shore Weekend! Part 1: Temperance River State Park

How to Plan a Hike…and what is a hike anyway?

This week, a friend asked "what's the difference between a walk and a hike?" I've heard this question before, but even now...when things seem to be changing on the daily...the answer is still the same "Well, that's up to you..." When I signed up for my first 52 Hike Challenge, in 2017, my personal definition … Continue reading How to Plan a Hike…and what is a hike anyway?