Hiking through the Castle Danger area in 2013 I came to a sign informing me the Encampment River Bridge was out. No big deal, I thought. I’ll hike elsewhere and pick up this section next year.
To this day there is no Encampment River Bridge. It was washed out in the Historic Summer Solstice Flood Disaster of 2012, along with about $50 million worth of other stuff in northeastern Minnesota. What I found out by talking to other people who had hiked through the area is the Encampment River is not typically deep and gushing, so unless there’s been a heavy rain it’s easy to cross without a bridge.
With that knowledge I made plans for my final hike of 2014, from Silver Lake Township Road 617 at Castle Danger to Lake County Road 301. Saturday, Oct. 11, looked good on my calendar as one of the last days one might confidently expect nice weather before colder days set in.
Of course, there are forces other than weather and natural disasters aligning to alter whatever plans we might have for our lives. Six days before my hike, a great friend and mentor died in his sleep.
Back in the day it was sometimes tough work just to get a drink. Above is an undated stereoview reproduction from an 1875 McKenzie original. The reverse reads: “Duluth, Minn. in 1875. Mammoth Saloon, Jake Liedel, Prop. Lake Ave 2 blocks north of canal.”
Drinking and dining options at Miller Hill Mall will improve by month’s end. Lucky’s 13 Pub is set to open at 1600 Miller Trunk Highway on Jan. 30. Duluthians will barely recognize the space, which was occupied for 25 years by Old Country Buffet.
Happy Inauguration Day. Let’s celebrate peaceful transfers of power with a retrospective view of the portraits of Duluth’s Mayors. For many years, these portraits hung in the hallways of City Hall, but were recently taken down to be cleaned, maintained, digitized and cataloged. The images used here are taken from the Minnesota Digital Library. More information about each mayor is available at the site.
Don Ness says portraits are traditionally done 2-3 years after a mayor leaves office, and he anticipates his portrait will be added to the collection some time this year. So scroll backward through time with us and enjoy the virtual gallery of Duluth mayors.
Last night, I went to the TED at the Teatro. This regular event (on the third Wednesday of every month) has both a Facebook Page and a Youtube Channel. It’s the second time I attended, and it’s an event I’d like to return to, even if it had some complexities.
The event is structured with a chatty welcome, last night including an uncomfortable handshake (getting us to meet the people around us, like the handshake in a church). There is a Raymond Carver essay in which Carver reflects on something Tobias Wolff told him when Carver invited Wolff to an event, to meet some people. “I don’t want any new friends. I can’t do right by the ones I have now,” or something more or less like that. If, unlike me, you are into meeting strangers, sure, this was fun.
There was music from Medical Underground. Others, more into local pop/rock music, might chime in on their quality. I found them pleasant. One of the refrains of one of their songs appeared to be something like “We will be okay,” which maybe is reassuring.
Duluth Police are warning the public about counterfeit bills circulating in the area. Specifically, there are bills with the phrase “for motion picture use only” printed on them. The DPD is asking the public to pay special attention when accepting U.S. currency, particularly when bills are passed in busy settings that divert a person’s attention such as a line at a grocery store or restaurant.
Police are asking anyone who comes across such bills to call 911, but obviously the comedically correct thing to do is use the money to buy movie tickets.