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Best Day Trip Minneapolis 2011 - Drive around Lake Pepin

Drive around Lake Pepin

Drive around Lake Pepin

2500 N. 61

Lake City, MN 55041

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Readers' Choice: Duluth

There's nothing better than an adventure down twisty country roads to revel in the smug knowledge that we live in the best part of this country. A drive south around Lake Pepin, straddling the borders of Minnesota and Wisconsin, is a day trip full of winding roads and scenic stopping points. Head out of town on Highway 61 south through Hastings, swing through Red Wing for shoes or stoneware, and then down through Winona. Head to Wisconsin on Highway 43 to Wisconsin 35. Be sure to keep an eye out for majestic bald eagles that hunt along the river and their giant nests perched on telephone poles and pines. Head back up on the Wisconsin side on Great River Road. If you're hungry, stop at the Monarch in Fountain City for a home-brewed beer and an Uncle Harry's burger topped with olives and special sauce. Then drive through Alma. Stop for ice cream at Nelson Creamery. If your eyes grow weary, Pepin has coffee at Great River Roasters. Or have an elegant bite at Harbor View Café. Continue to Stockholm for a quick shopping stop: Scandinavian gifts, art galleries, antique store, the region's best pie at Stockholm Pie Company, and more. Continue north to Prescott, watching the hypnotic rolling farmland alternating with jagged rocks, bluffs, and cascades of green trees before reluctantly crossing the border on Highway 10 and heading home.

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Oops! Somehow the writer missed the quaint, historic towns of Maiden Rock, Bay City, & Hager City-- each with it's own charm--which are between Stockholm & Prescott, with their parks "a stone's throw away" from the Mighty Mississippi River, as it follows the WI Great River Road National Scenic Byway on it's way to New Orleans.


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