Joined: 03 May 2005
Location: N.W. corner pocket of Mpls.
Traveling north towards Grand Marais, the southern Minnesota plains
give way to the northern woods. It happens slowly, going un-noticed
until at some point you suddenly realize you are now in The North
Country. So it is with the seasons; the days become shorter, the
air cools, the tree canopies change color imperceptibly until all at
once you notice fall has arrived. If you're like us, you begin
reflecting on those rides you won't be taking in the coming months,
and you promise yourself to get in a couple more good rides before
the countryside is blanketed in snow and ice.
NorthwoodSTOC v4.0 @ Trail Center Lodge
(~30 miles North out of Grand Marais, MN on the Gunflint Trail)
Saturday, October 14, 2006
"He had discovered a great law of human action, without knowing
it - namely, that in order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it
is only necessary to make the thing difficult to obtain."
- Mark Twain "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer"
Twain didn't have pancakes in mind when he wrote that bit o'
prose but there's no denying he was right! So, do YOU covet pancakes?
Well, DO YOU???
Okay, sure you do - but whatcha gonna do about it?
In past years most riders have arrived by 9:00 – 9:30. If you
want breakfast - and you _do_want_breakfast_, get there by 11:45, as
Trail Center stops serving breakfast PROMPLTY at 12:00 TCST (Trail
Center Standard Time) on Saturdays. TC staff hold the official
breakfast time clock, and it's probably different than what your GPS
or watch says. Don't bother them with your version of reality; like
moose, they just don't care. Actually, wait... go ahead and whine to
them. It'll be fun for the rest of us to watch what happens. Hell,
why not order up some waffles while you're at it? You'll come away
with the knowledge that things just work differently up here – and
probably a delicious lunch too.
After breakfast, ride the MN Arrowhead for more fall colors, head
north to see if OPP officers will really confiscate your radar
detector (Yup!). Visit casinos even worse than those in NV (Gasp!).
Stop by Aerostich Riderwearhouse to start working on that wish list,
or simply head on home... taking the loooooong way back.
Hey, our work lives are all about organizing people and planning
stuff, so we're not about to make this work-like by holding a real
organized event. The route, the schedule, the entertainment - it's
all up to you. (If it WERE up to us, the event prolly wouldn't have
doubled in attendance for each of the past three years.) One thing we
WILL help you with is to save you a bit of money on lodging should
you decide to stay a night or two. The nice folks at the Grand Marais
Hotel Company have come through with nicely discounted rates at the
Aspen Lodge and Spruceglen Inn ($99 and $59 respectively for double
occupancy). Just tell 'em you're with the NorthwoodSTOC event when
making reservations, they'll take good care of you.
Both lodging choices are a short walk from the Gunflint Tavern - a
fine watering hole known to be popular with NorthwoodSTOC riders on
the Friday night before breakfast. Or so we've heard.
A word on weather… At this time of year in the MN Arrowhead the
weather can be… less than ideal for riding. But, if the sun is
out the days are glor-i-ous. Be prepared for the full spectrum of
Mother Nature's offerings. (For those of you playing along at home
this would be the "make the thing difficult to obtain" part.)
There might be door prizes and awards again this year - and then
again there might not. One lucky rider took home a bottle my favorite
zin-port last year. What can I say? I'm not over it yet...
Only one way to find out eh?
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