Dunes, Beaches and Sculpture Gardens

After Chicago, we spent some time at the Indiana Dunes State Park, hiking the dunes and swimming in Lake Michigan.

DSC04247.JPGLake Michigan has waves! It was odd. The ground drops off pretty quickly, and it’s fresh water, so you don’t float that well, but it was fun!

DSC04306.JPGDSC04249.JPGHi Chicago!

DSC04253.JPGWe hiked up “Devil’s Slide”. As you can see, I was not quite up to the challenge. I made it, but it wasn’t pretty.  The building is a fort from the Revolutionary War (I think it’s a replica? Not quite sure).DSC04268.JPGThe boys (all 3) decided to run down the back side of Devil’s Slide. The return looked like this:

DSC04275.JPGDSC04276.JPGDSC04277.JPGDSC04284.JPGDSC04285.JPGFrom Indiana, we drove to Wisconsin and has some dinner – cheese curds and walleye with Spotted Cow beer. And we watched the sun set over the Mississippi backwaters.

DSC04403.JPGThe next morning, we went for a dip in the river. With the giant catfish

DSC04442.JPGNot all of those ripples are from the current

DSC04439.JPGI went in!

DSC04472.JPGThey caught a frog. At the swimming beach.DSC04486.JPGThis is from the campground road, it’s just a cool marshy area of the river.

We drove through Minnesota, stopping at Blue Earth to visit the Jolly Green Giant!

DSC04565.JPGWe drove through Iowa for a bit, just to say we went to Iowa, then ended up in the prairies of South Dakota. DSC04624.JPGWhere’s Laura Ingalls?

We took a quick side trip to Devil’s Gulch, which Jesse James jumped his horse to get away from the law. The trail was horribly marked, but the view was pretty.

DSC04669.JPGFrom the bridge that now spans the gulch

DSC04677.JPGLooking up at the bridge.

And since it was a Sunday, we were able to play tourist at a John Deere shop

DSC04700.JPG

Ok, they’re kind of impressively large.

We stopped at the Porter Sculpture Garden.  Todd was extremely impressed by this place, so I’ll let him do the post. But, if you see a giant steer off of I-90 in South Dakota, take the next exit and go. It’s worth it.

DSC04768.JPG

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