Sunday, April 28, 2013

Walking in Excelsior

On Friday I went to the small suburb, Excelsior. Excelsior sits along side Lake Minnetonka and was known for having the Excelsior Amusement Park. At one time one take a street all the way from Stillwater, which sits east of St. Paul on the Minnesota- Wisconsin border to Excelsior.

Well, Excelsior still is along Lake Minnetonka and coming here on an April morning is probably a much better idea then an afternoon in July when the town will be crowded with people enjoying boating and other tourist attractions such as the restored steam boat.

The walk started from a cute coffee shop/bakery. I had a cup of coffee and a scone while I organized my books and reviewed the route for the walk.

Soon I was off on a walking trail that paralleled the trolley track. This trail went along St. Alban's Bay of Lake Minnetonka.

On Friday the lake still showed ice, not ready for boating. The temperatures, however, were the first of the season to climb into the 70s (21C), and it was lovely to be out walking. This was my first walk of the season without a coat or jacket -- oh heaven!

The lingering winter has delayed trees leafing out, so I got to see this lovely contrast of the trees against the blue sky.

This view of a small harbor gives one an idea of how many boats might be here on a lovely summer day.

The route required that I cut through a small wooded area to find the return trail.

Within sheltered areas I found lingering snow.

Back in the city I came upon this house. It is all that remains from the amusement park. This "cottage" was used to house the park managers.

Soon I was back on Water Street, the business area. I came upon an antique store that had posters out along the street that illustrated the life on Lake Minnetonka in the late 1940s - 1950s. 

Near this shop I found another shop called European Treasures. I just had to go in to see what it held. I told the owner I needed a fix of Europe before leaving in two months. I walked away with a hand towel made in Portugal. It has lovely embroidery on it, but also will make me think of the Portuguese students I encountered while teaching at the University of Pecs.

Back to the bakery to look again at the treats -- came home with loaf of sweet potato bread. I've never before had bread that contained sweet potatoes. It is quite nice for sandwiches -- gives the sandwich an unexpected flavor.

A lovely day in Excelsior and I took care of E in both my Walking Minnesota Cities and Walking the USA books.

Update on May 1: Today the Hennepin County Sheriff's  Office declared Ice Out on Lake Minnetonka. Only two other times in weather records has it taken until May for this to occur.

No comments: