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Saturday, July 6, 2013

POST 1151; JULY 06, 2013; HUTCHINSON, MINNESOTA.



* * * * * * * * * *

Yesterday was certainly a hectic day.  Knowing today would be a race to reach our goal before one of the lingering rain clouds reached us, I was determined to get an early start...

...and I did roll out of bed at 430 am...took my delayed shower, packed up SAM, and was the first hotel guest at the 6:00 am Continental Breakfast.  This hotel, like so many we have stayed, is managed by recent "immigrants"...courteous to a fault, but breakfast offered on the skinny side; i.e., No Fruits...No Yogurts...No Apple Juice...Miniature slices of bread & mini-Bagels - so small they disappeared into the toaster slots, requiring two plastic knives to form a "clamp" to reach down the slot to retrieve them.

All in all, a fun breakfast devoured quickly...back to our room...retrieve SAM...rush outside to hit the road (leave) by 6:45 am...the earliest departure in many days...

...only to be greeted holding the door by...:


...Please say HELLO to RON PESCHON...also a guest at the motel...and ready to chat about GPS and LORAN-C NAVIGATION SYSTEMS. 

On my early Sail Boats back in the late 1960s, I used LORAN-C navigation along the East Coast from NEW YORK CITY to near BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTES...then, in Puget Sound after moving to BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON in 1987.

By the time Ron says...gotta go, Bruce...have some appointments to make...

...it was now 7:30 am...still early, but not what I was after to reach the town of HUTCHINSON, MINNESOTA, some 32 miles distant...

...and today was going to be a scorcher with possible rain.




One last look back at our AMERICAS BEST HOTEL...




SAM and ME walked back into town...


...turned North on Route 22, past the Church...



...through the neatly trimmed residential neighborhood...



...past the scrumptious Aqua Park...a delight to see for such a small town...



...past the un-named lake guarding the Northern Border of town...



...past the Water Tower...

...now nearly two miles from the center of town, do I decide to make one last look at my pocket-map to be certain of our route to HUTCHINSON...

...only to find we are once again on the wrong road...Route 22 heads North, whereas we want to walk Route 19 West to reach WINTHROP, MINNESOTA where we intend to turn North on Route 15 which takes us to HUTCHINSON.

...so, "...all the best laid plans, etc. etc."  go to pot as we must retrace our steps & rolls back into the center of GAYLORD to reach Route 19...a delay of about one hour.

...it is 8:30 am, when we finally step out of town on Route 19...

...and 32 miles still waiting.

...my leisurely walk has turned into a race to reach our destination before falling victim to getting rained upon, or worse.

SAM and ME walk and roll past small streams...



...and past large streams...



...and even past quite large lakes such as LAKE MARION...



...Lake Marion...a really large lake with a "Regional" Park complete with boating and camping facilities.

Another 10 miles brings us to the unexpected:  HIGHWAY 15 IS CLOSED !

Reaching the DETOUR Sign, I try to stop vehicles exiting the Detour to find out what we face...no one stops...just waves and SAM and ME.

Finally,  a vehicle going "our" way does stop...Oh, it is a good 6 to 7 miles to go around the Detour...certainly to be raining in 1/2 hour...and near dark by the time you reach town...best to go down the CLOSED roadway...is a short construction area which is still dirt, but should be OK to cross with your cart...

...and, so, SAM and ME go for the original route...down the CLOSED roadway. 

Sure enough, before reaching the "dirt" construction area, it begins to rain...and rain...and rain some more.

Finally arriving at the physical blockade, SAM and ME bypass the barriers and begin across the now soaked dirt.  In the distance, we see a rather large MALL, complete with many BIG BOX Stores.  The "construction" consists of building a new ROUNDABOUT into the MALL.






...the ROUNDABOUT about ready for paving...which SAM and ME have successfully crossed...finding ourselves back on solid pavement of Route 15.



MENARDS, one of the Big Box Stores of Eastern and Midwest America, is the first MALL store we encounter.
As we leave the construction area, naturally, it stops raining.  SAM and ME continue on Route 15, hoping to find a motel and a restaurant, as I have not eaten since 6:00 am.


SAM appraises the entrance (dirt and gravel) into the first motel we find...SHAMROCK INN...

SAM parked outside, a "senior" holds the hotel door for me as I enter...asking...SENIOR WALKING AMERICA (stenciled on the back of my reflective vest)...where you walking from...where you walking to...

so, yes, at the very last moment, we are again chatting with folks...this time in front of the Desk Clerk, who waits patiently for us to complete our conversation.

We are now safely in Room 106.  My tummy is filled with Spaghetti and Meat Sauce, chased with  LARGE MILKSHAKE from Next-door MAC DONALDS.

In the morning - and not too early in the morning - SAM and ME plan to travel North on Route 15 to the town of DASSEL, where we will turn left on US Highway 12, heading West toward the town of WILLMAR, MINNESOTA.

It is now 10:45 pm, having required nearly four hours to prepare this update...

...time for a shower...then to listen to my pillows.


2 comments:

skeeterraz said...

Glad you made it safe and sound to your next destination. Safe travels tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

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