sunset-on-the-north-shore-15536_staatsWe’ve just returned from a weekend getaway along the North Shore of Lake Superior.  Winter was in all its glory with temps hovering between zero and below.  Our days were spent marveling in the beauty of the area and of winter along the far northeast corner of Minnesota and across the border into Ontario.  At Kakabeka Falls outside of Thunder Bay much of the water was frozen but there were still torrents plummeting over the edge, and the cold winter air caused sea smoke to rise off of Lake Superior. Along the Gunflint Trail people were out participating in and cheering a dog sled race, and there was also a fat tire bike festival taking place.  It was good to see so many people in multiple layers of clothing, big hats, thick gloves, and heavy, big boots – all ready to embrace the adventures that are unique to a cold Minnesota weekend.

Savoring the winter sunset 0028_StaatsMinnesotans are happy that we are having a winter!  The temperatures have remained below freezing and we couldn’t be happier!  Yes, it may sound strange to those living in warmer and more temperate climates that we’re glad it’s cold, but with this more “normal” winter weather we can get out and enjoy the activities that make winter memorable.  The neighborhood ice rinks have hockey games at night, the skating rinks are filled with graceful skaters and those that aspire to their grace.  The golf courses are filled with cross-country skiers and snowshoers, and our lakes are open for fishing again.  All it takes is a trip out onto the ice, either on foot or by car or truck (if the ice is thick enough), something to drill a hole in the ice, a line to drop through the hole, and the patience and luck to be successful.  And last night there was a plethora of hopeful people outside ice fishing on a nearby lake.  It also helped that there was a winter sunset that put on a beautiful display, as if beckoning us out to savor the winter weather and this sunset.