Annual Lake Street Pilgrimage

May 27th, 2011 - 5:30 hrs

This year, I delayed my walk until after the 2 Uptown muggers were arrested. I started at 7:30 AM, which is too early in the day for most of the 'street people', and too early in the season for the suburban runaways. There were fewer people on the street, and I sensed nervousness, and leery eyes. Older people became comfortable with eye contact and a nod, and distance.

I think this was my final Lake Street hike. I found very little change over the last 3 years, only a couple new murals.

I tried a light breakfast at Bryant Bowl. I tried the Orchard Chicken Sub at Subway. I had plenty of coffee over the day, and 3 aspirin.

My walking shoes were shot, but with wool socks and a tight lace job, I got no blisters. I was Gellin'.

March 31st, 2010 - 5:30 hrs

Some of my food stops were different this year. My walking time has improved. I brought 3 Aleve, the amount I used last fall, but used none, so my new hip joint is working well. Thank you Dr. Johnson.

I used 100% wool socks and 2 pads in my walking shoes this year, the original pad and a gel pad. One foot liked the gel pad on top. The other foot liked the gel pad on the bottom. No blisters this year.

We had no snow in March. The ice is half gone from Lake Harriet. I'm glad it was overcast today, because the high was 76.

Points of interest this year: 'Monkey Business', 'African Birds', 'Prairie Woodworking'. One panhandler. Peterson Machinery is gone, moved to a new neighborhood.

March 22nd, 2010 - False Start

I never carry a wallet on this walk. When I arrived at the first food stop, I discovered I had failed to bring any paper money. I only walked about 6 miles today, and the weather was nice.

Sign of the economy: A panhandler only asked for a dime. Said he was only a dime short to buy a shot. I had a few coins in my pocket, and I was happy to help him out.

October 7th, 2009 - 6:15 hrs

This is the first year I have done the hike in the autumn. Picking what might be the last nice walking day, I set off late, at 10:12 AM. The temperature got up to 64°F. I unwisely wore a new pair of walking shoes, and got a blister, even with wool socks. I definitely wasn't gelin'.

Walking Lake Street is always an eye opener. Need a saddle? Need a French maid's outfit? No problem.

I like to follow the effects of the changing demographics. Of course, goat meat is available several places. Now, it is also possible to get camel meat. Wait. I assumed it was camel meat. Maybe it was a live camel.

Tattoos, spelled many different ways, are available in the inner city. By contrast, the suburbs have Tat Removal shops.

I wasn't sure I could make the whole trip this year, because of my new bionic hip. My first goal was the Mississippi bridge. After that, I tried for Hosteling International at Selby-Dale, and after that, I went all the way to the State Capitol. Including nearly 2 hours on the bus home, the trip took 8 hours this year. I was moving mighty slowly on the 2nd half. I took my usual coated aspirin in the morning, and 2 Aleves during the walk, followed by 2 glasses of red wine when I got home. This means the Grand Canyon is within the realm of possibility for the spring.

Best tee shirt in St. Paul: Paddle faster! I can hear banjo music. The best tee shirt in Minneapolis was unprintable.

I've added a few new pictures below.

Note: in 2008, I skipped the walk because of worsening arthritis in my left hip. I resumed in the fall of 2009.

May 3rd, 2007 - 6:40 hrs

This year was even a little slower, although, I made an extra stop along the way and ate 'second breakfast'. My stamina is great, but even with 2 Aleve, things still hurt. That makes the hike less fun, but there are always interesting events. An unintentional entertainer on the bus ride home chastised his seat-mate for not being old enough to know about having to ride in the back of the bus. She moved, and after he had a few more bumps from his paper bag, he got off the bus. The ride home was pretty boring after that.

It was a beautiful spring day, with a high of 72°F. Crab apple and regular apple trees were in full bloom along the way. Too early in the day for the gang-bangers to be out, and too early in the season for the suburban run-aways to be cruising, and I missed the Cinco de Mayo madness that will happen on Saturday.

A few more businesses are gone. Napa Jacks bit the dust. Mid-town Market is no big whoop. Stuff was going on in front of the Capitol.

June 1st, 2006 - 6:05 hrs

This year was 1 hour and 15 minutes slower because of my ski crash in March. Also, I made an extra stop, and changed some of the stops I have made in the past. Took more pictures of murals and other interesting things. Nice late spring day. Buses on the return trip were crowded because of gas prices.

April 9th, 2005 - 5 hrs

I did my annual spring pilgrimage and eating trip down Lake Street, from my home to the Minnesota state capitol on Saturday. It is always interesting to see the changes in demography and economics of the neighborhoods. In prior years, I have hiked one-way, which takes 5 hours, and rode the bus home, which takes 2 hours. This year, because I am conditioning for some possible future hikes, I had planned to do a partial round trip. The distance is 13+ miles one way from my home. I wanted to do a 20 mile hike. At 19.55 miles, I sat down for a chalupa and called for a ride. I wasn't that tired, but I had a lot of parts that hurt.

The route is a virtual straight line to the east, but the street names change. Minnetonka Boulevard becomes Lake Street near the Minneapolis border. At the Mississippi River, the lowest point in the hike, Lake Street becomes Marshall Avenue. Marshall Avenue intersects with John Ireland Boulevard, which runs northeast to the capitol building. I recorded the route on my GPS.

While the hike this year was not as adventurous as some of my mountain hikes, this hike has sometimes proven very interesting and adventurous.

I have done this hike most years since 1994, usually in March or April. The following pictures were taken beginning in 2005. Previous hikes:
04/09/2005
04/25/2004 - 5 hrs
03/15/2003 - 5 hrs
04/13/2002 - 5:15 hrs
04/08/2001
03/04/2000 - 5 hrs
03/27/1999
03/22/1998
03/23/1997
04/28/1996
04/14/1995
06/05/1994

2005
Impressive tree house on Minnetonka Blvd at Ottawa.
Impressive tree house on Minnetonka Blvd at Ottawa
2005
Lawn chairs and a mobile.
The smallest lawn chair is 'normal' size.
Lawn chairs and a mobile
2005
Wind surfing art objects on the northwest corner of Lake Calhoun.
Wind surfing art objects on the northwest corner of Lake Calhoun
2005
Bus-stop bench, made from bus parts? Your tax dollars at work?
Gone in 2007.
Bus-stop bench, made from bus parts?
Early spring 2005
It's too cold to swim at Lake Calhoun.
It's too cold to swim at Lake Calhoun.
2005
I like the Latin American influence on Lake Street. Consequences are good food and some very nice wall murals.
Latin American wall murals on Lake Street
2006
Minneapolis residential junk art on a side street.
This was gone in 2009.
Minneapolis residential junk art on a side street
2006
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2006
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2010
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2010
Lake Street Train Mural.
Lake Street Train Mural
2010
Cedar Avenue Cemetery.
Cedar Avenue Cemetery
2010
Delivery by bike.
Delivery by bike.
2010
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2011
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2011
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2011
Lake Street Mural & paint job.
Lake Street Mural & paint job.
2011
Bike stands at the International Market on Lake Street.
Bike stand. Bike stand. Bike stand.
2011 Merged Images
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2007
Crab apple blossoms.
Crab apple blossoms
2009
Lake Street Mural.
Lake Street Mural
2009
Lake Street reconstruction is finally done. Bike parking stations sometimes hint at a local business.
Lake Street reconstruction is finally done. Bike parking stations sometimes hint at a local business.
2009
Bike parking station near a dental office.
Bike parking station near a dental office
2009
Mississippi River fall colors.
Mississippi River fall colors
2009
River graffiti.
River graffiti
2005
Wicker Harley on Marshall Avenue in St. Paul.
Wicker Harley on Marshall Avenue in St. Paul
2005
Izzy's home-made ice cream on Marshall Avenue. Very good, but too expensive.
I say that every year.
Izzy's home-made ice cream on Marshall Avenue
2011
St. Paul steeplejack.
St. Paul steeplejack.
2011
Butterfly. We don't have any this big on the Minneapolis side of the river.
Butterfly
2006
St. Paul residential bench art.
St. Paul residential bench art
2006
St. Paul residential yard art.
Might this have been a former fraternity?
St. Paul residential yard art.
2007
St. Paul canine relief station.
St. Paul canine relief station
2009
St. Paul residential painted sidewalk.
St. Paul residential painted sidewalk
2010
Marshall Avenue house number.
Marshall Avenue house number.
2007
St. Paul crab apple blossoms.
St. Paul crab apple blossoms
2006
St. Paul Vocational Art Competition.
St. Paul Vocational Art Competition
2005
St. Paul Cathedral.
St. Paul Cathedral
2005
Minnesota Historical Society.
Minnesota Historical Society
2005
Minnesota State Capitol Building.
Minnesota State Capitol Building
2011
Blue Cross bikes all over.
Blue Cross bikes all over.