Tuesday, May 22, 2007

#208 Paddling for a Purpose

Paddling 2300 miles from Lake Itasca, Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico on the Mississippi River sounds like fun, doesn’t it? Kelly thinks so. He’s long talked about canoeing the Mississippi. And that was our conversation again this morning as we approached the headwaters of the Mississippi River. How long would it take? Are there any rapids to navigate? Would we get swamped by a big cargo ship down by St. Louis? Would these infamous Minnesota mosquitoes drive us out of the canoe before we reached Bemidji?
20070522 Paddlers portaging
Serendipitously, we walked up to the Mississippi headwaters just as two University of North Dakota students were preparing to set off on their own 45-day odyssey down the river - camping along the way.
20070522 Paddlers loading
Our friend (and river expert) Rob told us that if we spit into the river in Minnesota, our spit will end up in New Orleans 90 days later. So, I guess these UND students will be traveling twice the speed of spit.
20070522 Paddlers paddling
Despite their gracious "we have plenty of room in the canoe" invitation to join them, Kelly grudgingly agreed to wait for the next opportunity to sail with me - no matter what size the boat.

To follow their journey, check out their blog. I know we will.

Yours in serendipitous and vicarious encounters,

1 comment:

  1. I haven't checked your blog for some time I guess. We heard from K that you might be coming this way; but nothing happened. So thought I would check to see what's happening. And HAPPENING it is. I've gotten this far in the reading; and thought I should tell you that you were physically very close to Sarah and her growing family. Their P.O. address is Laporte, they are at Kabehkona Corners about 15 miles south of Bemidji. We have stayed at a B&B adjoining Itasca State Park. The road we use to get there you can step across the Mighty Mississippi.

    Now I must get back to the rest of my reading.