Back from Boulder, Thanks All Around

Balance Rock

Jen and I just returned from Boulder, Co via Rapid City, SD and Kansas City, MO and I wanted to send out thanks to everyone helping to make it a fantastic journey through the midwestern states. In roughly chronological order, I’d like to extend a big thank you to:

  • Jen for booking the hotels and being in the car with me for 6+ hours a day for 6 days.
  • The RVing clerk at Wall Drug for recommending the Mt. Rushmore lighting ceremony.
  • Deadwood, SD for reminding me every town has a story to tell.
  • Lindsay, Brian, and Sidney for their exceptional hospitality and driving recommendations through the Rocky Mountain National Park.
  • Two Hands Paperie for giving Jen her paper fix and putting a spring in her step.
  • Jen Bohmbach for originally recommending the Boulder Dushanbe Tea House and joining us for dinner. Try the Persian Vegetarian Kooftah Balls and you can thank Brian also.
  • Roland for suggesting we stop at the Garden of the Gods.
  • Brian, our server at the Kansas City Kona Grille for a meal (amazing Maui Tacos with catfish) I’d gladly pay double for and service to match. Special bonus thanks for recommending the local Latte’Land when asked where to get a good cup of coffee. Yes, a Kona Grille would be an excellent addition to the Minneapolis dining landscape.
  • Griffin Technology’s iTrip and MacAlly’s PodCig for filling the long stretches of South Dakota and Wyoming with our favorite driving songs.
  • Chrysler for making a car that stays cool on the inside even when it’s 100+F outside.

A couple dozen photos are now up over in my Flickr site in the Boulder Road Trip 2005 set.

Heading for the Mountains – Where Else?

Later this month, Jen and I are taking a quick road trip west to break in the PT Cruiser. We’ll be getting as far as Boulder, CO and swinging through Kansas City, KS on the return trip.

I’m itching to see some mountains, and I’ve heard great things about both Boulder and Denver. Outside of that, we’re open.

Got any suggestions on must-see, must-do, or must-meet? I’m open.

A Weekend in the Northwoods

Bayfield Ice Road Photos

Jen and I headed up to Bayfield this weekend for an enjoyable, off-season Northwoods weekend.

The moment we merged onto Highway 2 in Wisconsin, our mobile phones declared ‘No Network’. It took a moment for ‘No Network’ to sink in:

  1. No using the phone’s bluetooth as a dial-up modem.
  2. No calling people you’re meeting to say, “we’re running late”.
  3. No calling for help from the side of the road when Something Bad Happens. (i.e. the car starts making odd sounds in the middle of the Chequamegon National Forest)

Though, we missed ‘Book across the Bay’, the cross-country ski race across the frozen Chequamegon Bay between Ashland and Washburn, we still took advantage of the winter-only real estate.

During the winter months, the State of Wisconsin plows a two-lane, pine tree-lined, road on frozen Lake Superior connecting Bayfield to Madeline Island.

After some difficulty with a small patch of ice outside the B&B, the Neon performed excellently on the Ice Road and had enough zip left for a full tour of the yet-to-be-fully-plowed island.

As isolated as I felt without T-Mobile service, I found the lack of TV and phone in the room refreshing. It made watching Anchorman off the PowerBook‘s DVD player that much more enjoyable.

We’d like to thank Sharon & Craig Locey, proprietors of the Thimbleberry Inn for a quiet, comfortable stay. Sharon’s enthusiastic hospitality, her apple bars, and her restaurant recommendations – all flawless.

She sent us to the Deep Water Grille, next to the South Shore Brewery in Ashland and Maggies in Bayfield. Both are islands of culinary joy in the Northwoods. At Deep Water, Jen enjoyed the black bean veggie burger and I’d go back for half a mushroom, spinach, and gorgonzola sandwich. If they’re out of whitefish livers at the pink flamingo-covered Maggie’s, get the spicy Thai peanut noodles.

After we got out of the lake-effect snow storm, the drive back went very quickly.