My husband's paternal grandmother turned 100 years old last month. Hubby and I, and our boys, along with hubby's parents and hubby's brother and brother's girlfriend, took a weekend trip to Minnesota to attend her birthday party.
Friday, Sept. 19
Hubby and I both used a vacation day, and we had the boys pre-excused from school for the day. We were up early, the plan being to meet everyone at hubby's parents' house at 7:00am. Got there on time, only to find that Bro & Girlfriend were running late and weren't expected for maybe 45 minutes. *sigh* So we paced around and chitchatted with hubby's parents. I realized I'd forgotten my printout of directions to the Mall of America, decided to make a quick run home since we are only a couple miles away and we were waiting anyway. By the time I got back, Bro was there. Doh!
After double checking cellphone numbers and going over the planned route (we were following my father-in-law in our own cars, a three car caravan) we finally headed out at 7:45am.
At 8:30am we stopped in Montello, WI. We'd come across a detour and FIL wanted to go over the change in plans. Bro-in-law also wanted to fill up with gas. The only thing I knew about Montello was that I'd gone thru it once and noticed a waterfall, and had always wanted to go back for a better look but never had. So how hilarious was it (to me anyway) when I realized the gas station we'd stopped at was right next to the waterfalls!
Actually these aren't *the* waterfall I'd seen years ago. I found that one down the block a little bit, and right up close to the road. I didn't have time to run around trying for a spot to get a pic though. I also noticed this area was called Daggett Park, and saw this sign but forgot (duh, me) to take a pic of it. The following pic is one I found online. (Apologies for lack of proper credit.) Click the pic for a larger, easier to read version.
We were soon back on the road, but not for long. We stopped in Westfield, WI to have breakfast at the Pioneer Motor Inn.
This was a very nice place. They give you way too much food. LOL! Seriously, pancakes the size of your plate. But I *love* breakfast foods and enjoyed every bite of my French toast and sausage. The bathroom at this place, however, is obviously made for midgets.
On the road again by 9:50am.
We crossed what I think was the Wisconsin River. Taking pictures from the window of a speeding car, trying to see over a bridge, is not exactly productive.
One highlight of the trip is that I knew we'd be passing some amazing scenery. I was hoping the leaves would have been turning more by trip time, hoping we'd have tons of fall color, but it wasn't to be. There were scattered patches of autumn awesomeness though.
These rocky cliffs are somewhere around Oakdale, WI. The first pic, you get your first glimpse of them if you look directly above the red Jeep in the center of the pic. Kinda cool cuz it looks like a profile of a Native American chief, with the green hill being the big headdressing. hehe
This next pic is somewhere before Warrens, WI. We're still not sure what the large yellowish area on the side of the hill is. We knew we would be going thru an area with alot of sandstone or limestone or somethingstone along the roadsides, but as we approached this we didn't know if it was crops or stone. As the car flew by, it looked more stone-like than crop-like to me.
It was around Hixton, WI that we saw the rocks we were thinking of.
Stopped in Menomonie, WI at 12:30pm for a potty break at the biggest, fanciest rest area I've ever seen in my pathetically few travels. I think it was next to a lake or something...? Anyway, potty break, stretched our legs, restocked our drinks and munchies, and headed out again.
A stop for gas at 1:25pm in Hudson, WI.
And about 1:35pm we crossed the Mississippi River and were into Minnesota. Again, that pics out a window while crossing a bridge thing proved less that successful.
Bro-in-law turned off just after the river. He was going to visit someone and would meet up with everyone later in the evening at the motel.
To be continued...