June 10:  Wabasha to Red Wing, MN  32.1 miles

The description of the route from Wabasha to Red Wing listed on the Woman Tour web site claims that the short mileage day is due to the steepness of the terrain.  Assuming this to be true we were all braced for a day of "hell" with roads headed up into the heavens!  Ha, the joke was on us!!  Think maybe Woman Tours was just testing to see how many of us read the literature that they pass out at the beginning of the trip.

The weather has cleared and the promise of sun all day coupled with the short mileage begged the question of why start early.  Even if the way was going to be hilly, with only 30+ miles, one could walk the entire route and still get there before dark.  So breakfast was scheduled for 8AM!

Finally on the road the group meandered up Route 61 on its wide shoulder looking for that first climb.  The river flows gently on the right with high bluffs bordering the Wisconsin side for the first several miles.  The railroad line runs parallel either directly between the road and the river or with the road in the middle and rails to left.  A bald eagle soared overhead for a few minutes as if to stand guard of the area.  Wildflowers lay a carpet of color across the fields and the marsh areas once again display the work of the beavers with small "huts" scattered throughout.

Twelve miles up river from our start is the town of Lake City.  Home of the "Birth of Water-skiing", it sits on a section of the Mississippi referred to as Lake Pepin.  The lake is actually a widening of the river to such a degree that it appears to be a lake in form.  The lake is a favorite vacation place for not only water-skiing, but fishing, and sailing.  Several yacht clubs dot the riverbanks.

Having not found that "big" hill yet, the next decision was to slow down -- or we would be at the next motel before last night's guests had left!!  Coffee at Moz's with the owner in total rhapsody with us -- so much so that he insisted that we pose for pictures and he would have it put in the local paper along with our story.

Meandering further on we passed through Frontenac (Frontenac is really two small communities, Old Frontenac and New Frontenac. Neither is incorporated. Old Frontenac has no retail businesses.  Old Frontenac was considered the "Newport of the Northwest" during the late 1880s.).  It was only 9:30am so now the ride was slowing do a crawl and still not "hill" in sight!!

At 28.6 miles the sign for Red Wing, MN appeared on the side of the road.  We had covered almost the entire day's route and never left high gear.  So much for a "hilly" day. 

Red Wing is known for its Red Wing Shoe Factory as well as its Red Wing Stoneware/Pottery.  Being women of sound mind and lots of time, it may not have been a hilly day, but it was going to be a productive one.  Lunch overlooking the river at the old St James Hotel and then on to the Red Wing Shoe store and the pottery salesroom.  And our hotel is just across the street from the main pottery outlet.  Oh how good do we have it!!??

Holly at Lake Pepin

Lake City - Birthplace of Waterskiing!

Lake City Yacht Club

Laura, Moz, Kathy, Clark, Frankie, Georgia, Sue, Edith @ Moz's!!!

Edith in Red Wing Shoeing It!!!

Judy Being Booted!!

Sue Enjoying the Boot!!


Downtown Red Wing

Edith, Kathy, Sue in Front of the St James Hotel