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Minnesota - pt.1

I've been in the United States for just under a week now and I have had a fantastic time. I've had the opportunity to see some very different parts of Minnesota, from gorgeous lakes, sunsets over cliffs, beautiful fall trees and of course assault rifles, handguns & explosives. You know, just your typical things.... I started my US trip in Rosemount, not too far from the main airport in Minnesota. This is where my friend Desiree and her brother Ronald picked me up close to midnight and took me to their place where I was based for the next few days. They had a super family orientated home and it was so welcoming arriving there, not to mention their adorable dogs! The next day Desi had to work so Ronald and I met up with one of this friends and we went for a walk around a lake nearby to check out the beautiful fall colours. We went to an area called Lebanon Hills Regional Park where we could see one of Minnesota's many lakes. I knew Minnesota had a lot of lakes, but they have a crazy amount...11,842 lakes (of 10 acres or more) to be exact. Ronald, Raheem & I walked around the lake, got some awesome photos of fall leaves and made friends with some of the wildlife.

Afterwards, Ronald and I went indoor climbing and I forgot how fun it was, I had such an awesome time and I cannot wait to get home back to Canmore to sign up to my local climbing gym and get into climbing all the time! The next day Desi took me north to see a town called Duluth, roughly 2.5hrs North where we got to see some beautiful sights, see another old friend I haven't seen in 5yrs and check out the surrounding areas of Duluth. It was a very industrial feeling town based on Lake Superior, which is the world's largest fresh water lake. We had a coffee in town at a cafe called "Amazing Grace" where our friend works before walking around Duluth, taking in the town before heading further north to an area called Northshore.

Someone I don't know commented on one of my photos on Instagram suggesting that I check out a place called "Palisade Head" while I was in Minnesota, and conveniently it was only 30mins North of Duluth, a tiny bit further than Desi was planning on taking me. Our first stop was "Gooseberry Falls" - a pretty large & powerful waterfall which was surprisingly busy that day. It seemed to be a popular destination for families and travellers to stop at.

Afterwards we heading to Palisade Head, the place someone suggested to see, and it was so worth it! The location was stunning, massive rock cliffs looking over the massive Lake Superior, covered in beautiful fall coloured trees as the sun was setting behind us. Couldn't have asked for a more beautiful spot to spend the afternoon.

After this, just before making the long drive back to Rosemount we stopped at a small Bar & Grill for Pizza & Beers at "The Cove" - it was amazing! That night we went and saw the movie "Free Solo" which is all about a crazy free solo climber (someone who climbs with no ropes, no assistance). This guy climbed one of the most amazing cliff faces in the world, El Capitan, a 1km/3000ft tall cliff in Yosemite National Park. Honestly one of the most epic and edge of your seat movies I've ever watched, worth checking out for yourself! The next day was a relaxing chill out day, we visited an awesome park for more amazing fall colours and another great waterfall before checking out the Mall of America, a giant mall with roller coasters and more inside! Later in the evening we met up with my next friend on my American journey, Simon. We met him and a few of his buddies for more beer & pizza on the other side of town. It was a really cool night, I love meeting new people and just generally seeing how my friends live on the other side of the world. We had a fantastic night and after all the delicious food I crashed on one Simon's buddies couches before Simon & I really began our adventure the next day...


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