Monday, February 4, 2013

St. Croix country

photo of spray over the St. Croix River at St. Croix Falls
© harrington
I thought perhaps some of you might enjoy being reminded of what water is like when it's not snow or ice. I took this photo of the St. Croix last summer near beautiful downtown Taylors Falls. (We needn't go into the fact that I was actually outside of My Minnesota in St. Croix Falls, WI. My wife and I were there to attend a Storyhill concert at the Festival Theatre. Taylors Falls doesn't have a comparable venue.) Spray rising from the river, green foliage, a warm summer evening all lie ahead of us. For this week, however, we seem destined to die the death of a thousand cuts snowfalls. Coping with a daily dose of 1/2" to 1" of snow wears thin after the first two falls. Coping with the St. Croix, other than the falls, is a treat. I've waded it, boated it, driven along it on both sides, driven across it at Stillwater, Osceola, Taylors Falls and, as I recall, near Grantsberg. It's been the scene of adventures such as the one I had one evening, while I was wading and fly fishing at the junction of the Snake River and the St. Croix. I managed somehow to annoy a beaver that was swimming upstream toward me. Maybe it saw me as an obstacle between where it was and where it wanted to be. I'll never know. Anyhow, said beaver proceeded to swim in circles around me, making noises that sounded like something Rod Serling was auditioning for the Twilight Zone. I, for a change exhibiting more brains than testosterone, reeled in, waded ashore and waited for the wild life to clear the area. In addition to seeing, and sometimes experiencing, wildlife, the landscape of hills, bluffs, farms and forests makes the St. Croix valley a visual treat.  It's also home to a number of talented potters and other artists and artisans. All in all a better place to be than to be from, agitated beavers notwithstanding. I hope you feel the same about My Minnesota and stop back soon.