Fort Snelling State Park (Minnesota) 03-May-2022

We’re stuck in temporary quarters until the current occupants of our new home move and we finish some paperwork. All this moving has really cut into our hiking time. 😥 So we’re going to take advantage of our “on hold” status to do as many hikes as possible between now and when we finally get settled here. The weather is helping with this goal, as it has now turned warmer, sunnier, and drier (at least for a few days).

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Minnehaha Falls (Minneapolis) 02-May-2022

We were informed by the 60 Hikes guide (Hike #16) that these Falls (53 feet / 16 m) are both the most popular natural landmark in Minneapolis and …at the top of the list for first-time visitors... It therefore seemed incumbent on us (as first timers) to go visit them. But the guide also mentioned that the Falls get on toward 850,000 visitors per year. 😳 This seemed like quite a crowd to former small town folks such as ourselves. So we figured that visiting on a cold, overcast Monday morning would lessen our chances of being trampled. This turned out to be a good decision, as we encountered only several dozen other people during our walk to the Falls and along the creek. 😀

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Around the U.S. by Train #3: Crescent (March 2017)

Amtrak Cresent New Orleans Louisiana

The Crescent, which actually starts in New York City, picked us up in DC in the late afternoon and whisked us over the Potomac into the South. The sun set while we were having dinner on the train and by next morning we were making a station stop in Atlanta, Georgia. After that we swept through a series of small Southern towns, including Anniston, Alabama (home of the Anniston Army Depot, the only depot capable of performing maintenance on heavy-tracked combat vehicles) and Birmingham, Alabama (home of the Sloss Furnaces, a National Historic site). As the sun set, we crossed Lake Pontchartrain on what seemed like a very narrow railroad trestle, went past the above ground Greenwood Cemetery, and arrived at Union station in the Big Easy in the early evening – on-time after 1,152 miles on the rails.  There are several Marriott-related hotels in downtown New Orleans, so we tried our taxi driver’s patience as we caromed around looking for the right one.  After that, we opted for a late dinner at the hotel, and called it a day.

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