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Jay Cooke State Park - a hike to an other worldly kind of place in northern Minnesota

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Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Good morning spark friends. Here is one of the hikes we took this past weekend. I live in Minnesota and we have some gorgeous state parks. I have always been a walker, we have walked in cities all over the world, but this pandemic has caused us to stay closer to home so the silver lining in this is that we discovered some beautiful places to hike and stay socially distant from others in the great outdoors.
This is the hanging bridge as you come into the park.

This was a very challenging hike as you hike over tree roots everywhere, make sure you are watching exactly where you are walking, and huge rocks that formed years and years and years ago! One comment we heard as we started our hike was that this was a lion king moment. One of the kids who was visiting was out on a peak and made that comment. I got a good laugh out of that as it was really true!
Enjoy the hike vicariously through my pics!

I just learned that this swinging bridge was destroyed just a few years ago and was rebuilt in 2014. Major flooding and storms had destroyed the other.

So many of the trees looked like this. So much erosion around the roots but the trees keep on going. We really tried to avoid stepping on as many of the roots as we could on the trail, but sometimes it was impossible.

After taking the difficult trail up along the water banks, we took the easier trail that looped around through the forest and prairie area. It is so nice that they have a little bit of everything on these hikes as well as very well marked trails and maps.

And then back to the rocky trail coming down.

My husband is always trying to get away! LOL! It hasn't worked yet!

See, I caught him!

And of course, a few plants to end the hike!

We hiked for about 2.45 hours and went almost 6.5 miles. It was a gloriously sunny day, not too hot, not to cool, but absolutely amazing. We have been to Duluth many times but we had never seen this state park before, we have passed the sign many times.
It is amazing what a person can do after joining sparks! I thought of all of you many times during my amazing hikes. Thinking about what a difference this site makes in giving you the courage to do things you have never done before.
So I hope this motivates a few people to look at state parks close to their homes and to get out and check them out if you can. Some have easy trails, some even have handicapped access trails that give you the freedom to see some of these beautiful places.
Have a joy filled day my friends and thanks for visiting one of my hikes!

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