Post-Holiday Hassle Hike This Saturday Afternoon

Between Thanksgiving and Black Friday you may need to step away from the craziness of life for a dose of cool (okay, cold), calming nature. If so, our Saturday afternoon hike along the Mississippi River Gorge is the right path for you.

November 24, 2018, Saturday, 2-3:30 pm: Mississippi River Boulevard Hike (St. Paul) – Hike Leader: Linda Quammen

Join the group for our last “regular” hike of the March-November season. We’ll tramp above the scenic gorge of the Mississippi River (St. Paul side) heading south. The beautiful fall leaves are gone butfungus we’ll be able to see the river and its narrow, deep gorge all the better from our lovely paved path.

Directions:From I-94, on the western edge of St. Paul, take the Cretin/Vandalia exit & go south about 1.5 miles on Cretin Ave. to Summit Ave. Turn west (right) on Summit Ave. & continue to where Summit Ave. ends or “tees” into Mississippi River Blvd. On the southwest corner of the “tee” is Shadow Falls Park with a tall monument to locals who died in WWI & a small parking lot. Park in the lot or along Summit St. & meet at the edge of the parking lot toward the monument.

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Haute Hike on Summit Avenue

Come on a post-Halloween hike with us up and down the Avenue–Summit Avenue, of course. While some of the historic homes may harbor ghost and goblins they should be sleeping their frightful Halloween antics off. As for our hikers–no ghosts or goblins allowed–no zombies, either!

At hike’s end it’s time for a drink or a slice at the Green Mill, a block west.

November 1, 2018, Thursday, 7-8:30 pm: Summit Avenue: West End Hike (St. Paul) – Hike Leader: Linda Quammen

Join us for a hike on St. Paul’s historic Summit Avenue from Ayd Mill Road westward. mansion of brick

Summit Avenue in St. Paul is one of the best preserved upper-class Victorian promenade boulevards in America. The west end of Summit Avenue developed between 1890 and 1920. Structures include an assortment of Queen Ann, Romanesque, Beaux Arts, Georgian Revival, and Italian Villa styles.

After the hike we’ll head to Green Mill Pizza on Grand Avenue, about a block from Kowalski’s, for socializing with food and drink.

Directions: From I-94, take the Snelling Ave. exit & proceed South to Summit Ave. Go East (left) on Summit Ave. about ½ mile to Syndicate St. S. You can turn South (right) onto Syndicate & left into the large parking lot of Kowalski’s or park along the street. We’ll meet at the corner of Summit & Syndicate.

 

CANCELED – 10/18 Thursday Night South St. Paul Riverfront Hike

Sorry, folks. Due to unforeseen circumstances we’ve had to cancel tomorrow’s hike.

But, we have more hikes in store, including our October 25, 2018, Centennial Lakes Park Hike on Thursday (7-8:30 pm) in Edina. I hope to see you there!

The 24-acre park’s paved trails outline the lake, passing by a variety of delightful spaces. There is a park pavilion, an amphitheater, boating concession, maze, putting Mini-golf and Peddleboat at Centennial Lakes Parkgreen, swings and many other types of seating throughout the different sunny or shady areas. Myriad shops and restaurants are just a few steps away from the paths, as well.

Directions: From Interstate 494 in Bloomington, exit onto France Ave. Go north n France Ave. & turn right onto Parklawn Ave. Take the first left into the parking lot. You will see “West Elm” on the building at the north end of the lot. Park near that end (but don’t park against that wall as it is restricted) and we’ll walk down into the park together.

Maple Madness Hikes Continue…

There’s still great hiking to be had this fall! Despite the white before the Winchell Trail hike today it all melted and we were treated to glowing orange and yellow maple leaf colors along the Mississippi Gorge. This week’s forecast is much warmer and sunnier–especially Thursday so come on out for Chris’ Riverfront Hike on the 18th or my Centennial Lakes hike on the 25th.

Canceled October 18, 2018, Thursday, 7-8:30 pm: South St. Paul Riverfront Hike (South St. Paul) – Hike Leader: Chris Olson

Join the group for a hike on a “rails-to-trails” trail along the Mississippi River in South St. Paul.  Related image

South St. Paul was once home to the largest stockyards in the world. Four major brands had meatpacking plants here, including Swift & Company and Armour & Company. World War II brought peak years to the industry when the plants had government contracts to supply military needs. By the l970’s, the market had decentralized and the sprawling plants became obsolete. The last to close was Armour in 1979.

Directions: From I-94 towards the east end of downtown St. Paul, take Hwy. 52 exit south & cross over the Mississippi River to its south side. Take Concord St./Hwy. 56 exit & proceed south on Concord St./Hwy. 56 to northern South St. Paul. The trailhead parking is just past (south of) the Butler Ave. intersection, on the west side (right) of Concord St. and the pedestrian bridge spanning Concord Ave.


October 25, 2018, Thursday, 7-8:30 pm: Centennial Lakes Park Hike (Edina) – Hike Leader: Linda Quammen  

Come hike with the group at Edina’s Centennial Lakes Park.

The 24-acre park’s paved trails outline the lake, passing by a variety of delightful spaces. There is a park pavilion, an amphitheater, boating concession, maze, putting Centennial Lakegreen, swings and many other types of seating throughout the different sunny or shady areas. Myriad shops and restaurants are just a few steps away from the paths, as well.

Directions: From Interstate 494 in Bloomington, exit onto France Ave. Go north n France Ave. & turn right onto Parklawn Ave. Take the first left into the parking lot. You will see “West Elm” on the building at the north end of the lot. Park near that end (but don’t park against that wall as it is restricted) and we’ll walk down into the park together.

A Brook, a Creek and a Mighty River

Minnesota may be the land of 10,000 (plus) lakes but we have a heck of a lot of rivers, too. The first three hikes of October feature a brook, a creek and one mighty river (yeah, you know the one I mean).

We just can’t seem to get away from the water–but who would want to? Come enjoy the smell of the crisp air and the crunch of the colorful leaves underfoot as we gaze at those riveting ribbons of blue.

Please note the October 14 hike is on a Sunday afternoon–not Thursday evening–so we can all enjoy the October glory of the sugar maples studding the Mississippi River Gorge!

October 4, 2018, Thursday, 7-8:30 pm: Trout Brook Hike (St. Paul) – Hike Leader: Chris Olsontrout swimming

Join the hiking group along the Trout Brook hiking/biking trail in St. Paul, another “rails to trails” trail development. Trout Brook was named after Trout Brook Estate, owned by lawyer and railroad president Edmund Rice. The waterway was a tributary to Phalen Creek, flows through St. Paul, and is the outlet of McCarron Lake.

Directions: Take I-35E north out of downtown St. Paul to the Maryland Ave. exit. Go west (left) on Maryland about 1/2 mile & turn north (right) on Jackson St. Proceed on Jackson St. approx. 1/2 mile & turn west (left) on Arlington Ave. Go about 1/8th mile & park at the U. S. Post Office – Rice Street Station (40 Arlington Avenue East) parking lot, on the south side of the street.


October 11, 2018, Thursday, 7-8:30 pm: Westside Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail Hike (Hopkins) – Hike Leader: Chris Olson

park by waterTake a hike with the group on the western corridor of Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail to mix scenic creek views with cityscape scenes. The 15.3- mile hiking and biking trail meanders from Hopkins to Richfield.

Directions: We will meet at Hopkins Valley Park. From Highway 169 in the western suburbs, take the Excelsior Boulevard exit & proceed west to 11th Ave. Go south (left) on 11th Ave. to 7th St.  Turn east (left) on 7th St. to 9th Ave. Go south (right) on 9th Ave. Hopkins Valley Park parking lot is on your left, just before Westbrooke Way. We’ll meet in the parking lot.


October 14, 2018, Sunday, 4-6:00 pm: Winchell Trail Hike (Minneapolis) – Hike Leader: Linda Quammen

Tag along with the group for a Sunday fall color hike along the Mississippi River Gorge on the Winchell Trail. It’s a hidden gem, set into the hillside below the busy Grand Rounds bikeway. The paved and unpaved trail hugs the hillside that drops steeply to orange maple leafthe Misssissippi–very secluded and wild, perfect for our  “Walk on the Wild Side” group.

Directions:  Take Highway 55 south from downtown Minneapolis, exit onto East 44th St. & turn east (left). Continue on it until West River Parkway. Turn left (north) onto the parkway. Then, in less than a block, turn into the first entrance on the right: a small parking area for park users. If no spaces are available, park along nearby streets like East 44th St. or Edmund Blvd. & walk back to the parking lot where we’ll meet.

Tonight’s Cedar Lake Hike Canceled Due To Severe Weather

hard rain and water splash

Sorry everyone but Mother Nature is acting up again.

Our crystal ball (and several weather sites) show another heavy batch of rain peaking between 7 and 8 pm tonight, in addition to the tornado watch. So, better safe than sorry (and soaked).

Hope to see you at another hike in better weather!


CANCELED Due to Severe Weather  September 20, 2018, 7-8:30 pm: Cedar Lake Hike (Minneapolis) – Hike Leader: Chris Olson     

First Day of Autumn Hike!

Autumn is the season just made for hiking. Mellow days sandwiched between crisp mornings and evenings make any time the right time for a hike.

Sunday is the first full day of autumn so join us on a special Wood Lake Park afternoon hike at 4:30 pm. We’ll continue to socialize afterward with killer apps, famous pizza, wine and craft beer on hand at nearby Pizza Luce.


September 23, 2018, Sunday, 4:30-6 pm: Wood Lake Park Hike (Richfield) – Hike Leader: Linda Quammen

Let’s celebrate the new fall season with a hike along marshy Wood Lake’s earthen trails and floating boardwalks. We’ll see what’s still blooming in the Nature Center’s prairie and be on the lookout for hopping and flying friends. (Over 200 types of birds and 30 types of mammals have been sighted in the park.)

Afterward, we’ll head a block away to Pizza Luce, for some great apps, pizza or dessert. No food judgments here. (Buffalo wings and cheesecake–yum!)

WoodLakeNatureCenter

Directions: Take Cty. Highway 62, exit onto Lyndale Ave. & go south on it. Take the first left turn (Lake Shore Drive) after the intersection with West 66th St. Proceed about 400 feet to the Nature Center (735 West Lake Shore Drive) on the south (left) side of the road. Meet by the gates of the Nature Center’s main entrance.