Sunday, April 06, 2008

Spring in Northern Minnesota

Gotta love it. One day the crocuses are blooming, the irises are poking green sword tips above the soil, grass is greening up along the sides of the house, nets are being put up on the tennis courts and then the next... depends on where you live. Parts of the Iron Range got hit with 20 - 30 inches of snow today. So far Duluth has less then an inch.

Winds have been stong today. Got out for a short run (3.5 miles) on the Lakewalk with a friend. Wind was out of the northeast blowing 24 mph. This meant there were some impressive waves rolling into the head of the Lake. I love watching the waves break over the barrier between the water and the Lakewalk. Not that many years ago a nasyy nor'easter took out parts of this path. Puts things into perspective about who is really the boss.

For a change, we were heading into the wind at the start of our run. A bit grueling at times, but the reward at the turn around was a nice tailwind on the way back. At one point we raced a set of waves coming in as we had recently watched a similar set break over the path and were not all that interested in a Lake Superior shower.

Yesterdays long run (12.5 miles - it's a step-back week) was warm. Forecast was for temps topping out in the mid-thirties and rain. Reality - it was in the upper 30's to low 40's at the start of the run, barely any wind, and sunny. And the temps went up from there. Good day to practice drinking and eating on the run! I had brought a holster-style pack along for my water so had no where to stash my hat, gloves and vest. Ended up with things tucked into the waist belt.

Saw my first turkey vultures of the season over the hills of Brewer's Park on the run home. Lots of robins are showing up and I've even heard male red-winged blackbirds singing. Pileated woodpecker was drumming out a number on a telephone pole along the edge of Proctor (or was I in Duluth by then, so confusing). Love is in the air (or at least the defense of breeding territory).

So far no wildflowers in bloom yet. Though I suppose those pussy willows I saw a week or two ago could count. I was looking for the first strawberries or violets on my walk down the SHT to the house. Still a little too soon, but the hillside does have a way of warming up quick. (Break here - imagine sudden darkness as the power suddenly goes out. No warning. Then, just as suddenly pops back on. Gotta love the electrical service in my part of town)

Trails are now entering that lovely time of year known as "mud season". And you thought there were only four seasons! Not only the trails are muddy, so are the roads (gravel by the house) and the yard. Probably should have taught Porter to wipe his feet before coming in the house. This means no trail running for a couple of weeks at least, depends on the weather. I miss the trails and can't wait to get off of the pavement again.

Anyway, I think that just before the power cut out on me I was going to give a knitting update:

I am finishing up the third mitten in the Knitpicks Gloss. Third?! Yeah, well, somewhere during the first mitten I went from the "large" to the "medium" size. Didn't realize it until I had reached the decreases for the top and my stitch count was all wrong. finished them anyway, as I was only off two stitches and knitting stretches. Cast on the second mitten, kept to the right number of stitches, finished all but the thumb and decided that the fit was much better and I would fix the first mitten. Off to the frog pond I went, ripping back until I was at the cuff (the error was quite early on) and I proceeded to reknit that mitten (okay - so really it was a third attempt at a mitten). I am back to where I started earlier today. One mitten completed, one just missing a thumb.

I still have a goodly portion of the first skein of Gloss left after all of this knitting, ripping and reknitting. What to do with it and the second skein?!?! The bird mittens are peeking out of their bag, quietly reminding me of their presence....


Chris said...

Wow, I hadn't heard that the Range got so much snow! Yikes. Here we're getting a little bit right now...

Lisa said...

It was pretty crazy up there from what I gather. I think we got less than an inch at my house. Go figure.

Lisa said...

It was pretty crazy up there from what I gather. I think we got less than an inch at my house. Go figure.