Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Grand Marais

The end of July, Jens, Jake, Jonell and I made a three day trip to Grand Marais for some biking and relaxing and "Scamping". Jack was at Italian language camp, Jon was at a hockey camp so they were not able to join us.
Exploring the shore.

The Scamp isn't very big but when the outdoors is your living room, it is big enough.
At the Pincushion trailhead ready to ride.
Last year Jens, Jonell and I made a trip up here. A few weeks later, Jon, Jake and I went to Copper Harbor for some mountain biking. We chose to return to Grand Marais for the style of trails and the town of Grand Marais. There were a few new trails since we were there last year. The trails are a mix of machine and hand built. Fast flowing but rock gardens scattered throughout that challenge all aspects of ones skill set. As far as flow trails go, the riding at Pincushion feels more natural, not predictable and truly contour.

Rock garden on a new section. Instead of covering all the rocks up, they worked the terrain to find a line and make for a challenging run ride.
Jens on a berm.
The wind was ripping pretty good when we were there, producing waves more common in October.
Mesmerized by the water.
Jonell rolling over the rocks at Britton Peak. Jonell rode a bit more this year and did awesome. A fun little trail system near Tofte.
Family ride! A great trip and nice weather.
I didn't force the kids into taking this picture.
Jens rolling over the rocks.

Nothing better than riding with your kids.

Hughie's Tacos a must stop in Grand Marais.

Top of state trail that heads back to Grand Marais. Had to stop and tell the boys the story of racing back in 91 and 92, the first years of the Sawtooth Challenge. It was always super muddy and the descent was always dicey. Especially with rigid bikes. 

Meanwhile Jack was at camp. At International Day, the day all camps come together for multi cultural sharing and conclude with song and dance. The Italian camp mixed it up this year, enacting a gladiator scene where Jack was the last man standing! Short version for a bit more complex production.
On our way home we swung by the cities to watch Jon's last game with the U of M model camp. Before his game former Gophers now playing Pro hockey were having a friendly scrimmage. Despite the slower pace, it was obvious there were pros out there with the skill set displayed.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Alex Hockey Fest

Being involved with hockey in some shape or form for almost 40 years now, every year I seem to find myself in a new arena watching the kids. It is pretty neat how every rink is different including the ice. The rink that I've stood in the most though is the Alexandria Runestone Arena. 

Few weekends ago wrapped up Alex Hockey Fest #3 for the summer with Jon and the high school team playing the second tourney there this year.

I was asked to help on the bench. It was fun watching the boys having a good time. It makes you realize that parents take things way to serious as the kids are just having fun.
Face off!
Custom repair job, using tape for string.
In between weekends, we were up in Moorhead one night to watch the production of "Footloose" directed by my sister Debbie who was with the Gooseberry Park players.
Great show!
The weekend before Jens and the Detroit Lakes team he played few times with this summer were playing. Jens and his friend Lucas stayed with me in the Scamp. In between games we kept busy with non stop activity.
Both weekends I brought the Scamp as I have reached my quota of hotel nights stayed in Alexandria.
Bacon, eggs and toast over the fire.
Bumper boats in between games.
Fanta Fest.

Car racing at the local track.

Go cart racing in between games.
Quick rest after lunch.
Prepare to do battle.

Airing out equipment. One of the beauties of summer hockey.

Traveler's Inn. The most popular spot in Alexandria on a Sunday morning. Simple, home cooked meals. We offered our spot but no one wanted to sit at the counter.
Taking a splash in the Long Prairie river on the way home.
We've had some funky weather this summer. Mostly all good other than the day the wind blew 55 mph and the hail but some great sunsets.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Fourth of July!!

Another fun filled Fourth of July weekend at the lake cabin with Jonell's side of the family. Great weather and more food consumed than the other holidays combined. As always, click on photo if visually impaired. 

Grandma Judy with her children, grandchildren and one of the dogs.
Kids displaying craft project.
Family with t
Cousins. Should of posted the photo from 5-6 years ago but its the old fashioned kind, not digital.
Uncle TJ putting the finishing touches on Friday night home made meatball dinner. Great stuff.  Nailed the exact touch of smoke infusion.

 Fourth of July early morning ride with Jake.
 Pounding the gravel on Norris trail. Almost a 700ft climb over 10 miles from the cabin to the high point, turn around and fly back.
Natural berm action closer to the settlement.

Quick dip in the lake than time to cook breakfast over the fire. Good move by Uncle Ryan to pull out the griddle for egg frying. 

Waving the flag in the flotilla.
Setting up for the flotilla.
Grandma with the children.
Ba Ba Ba Ba Banana!

Swim time.

Lots of baseball played. No injuries, no swings at the siblings, all good.

We all know deep down inside you really love him.

Picking teams for baseball.
Friday night temp toos. Gold Feather Jim.

Another craft project for evening flag waving.