After getting fleeced by the AirStream dealer in Anoka we were too stunned and wounded to drive any distance, so we set out for Eau Galle Lake’s Corps of Engineers campground near Spring Valley, WI. It’s only 70 miles and should have been a piece of cake, but the signage was below sub-standard. Our GPS found the campground’s street address, but its gate was locked up and apparently was Corps Headquarters for the dam, not a campground. We went down three wrong access roads following signs, and finally gave up and went to the nearby town of Spring Valley. I asked four people at a grocery store for some help in finding this place, to no avail. They wanted to help, but couldn’t remember the name or the direction or the distance. Then we asked the lady with a 7,000 miles from Wisconsin accent. She gave us advice. Everybody in the truck was skeptical (Pink goes into an excited, annoying whine and whimper mode when she senses stress, and this fit was Pinky on amphetamines). But in the absence of any alternative we followed the woman’s instructions. And they worked!
The Highland Creek campground on Eau Galle Lake looks like the Wisconsin woods where Paul Bunyan chopped trees. It’s dark, leafy, a little bit wet, and wonderfully cool even in August. There are a few mosquitoes, but no deerflies. The sites are nicely spaced, many are nearly level, and if you want a fire there’s all kinds of fallen wood nearby to burn.
We met mother and daughter locals, Kim and Karina, who gave us a pint of home-grown organic blueberries and a cup of raspberries. This fruit is better than anything you can buy in groceries down south, even Whole Foods. The flavors and crunch were just sublime. Some went into pancakes; others into a tart. All were simply the best.
Then we drove east toward Michigan, stopping along the way at the Wal-Mart in Rhinelander, WI. This took us through dairy country’s rolling hills and beautiful pastures. The weather cooperated with a little rain, no wind, and highs in the low 70’s. Wisconsin’s a lovely state. I think I like it better than Minnesota. Ah, Minnersoder’s got all those mosquitoes, ya know?