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BWCA Day 2: Donuts and Relaxation

By July 20, 2012Backpacking, Beer, Camping, Travel


(If you’re just checking into our Boundary Water’s trip, be sure to check out Day 1 first!)

I love that typically our first day on vacation is a lazy and laid-back one. After fighting a losing battle to sleep in with the morning sunshine, we crawled out of our tents around 8:00 and immediately started coffee. Although there might be better or more sophisticated ways to brew coffee while camping, we’ve found the best bang for both our buck and limited ambition is Starbucks Via. Boil water, pour packet, add creamer (coconut!) and done. After a light breakfast of coffee and granola bars, we decided to make our way back to Grand Marais to do a little exploring.


We parked along the main street and immediately made our way to the shore to admire Lake Superior.




Perfect photo-op for Christmas cards!


I’m pretty sure this is the first somewhat nice photo we’ve taken together all year…

We then hit the town. First stop, quaint local bookstore, oozing cuteness.


Which happened to be right next door to donut shop! Obviously donuts are a “rare to never” part of our diet, but I make it a goal to eat one on vacation every year. It’s been appropriately dubbed “vacation donut.”



World’s Best Donuts indeed! They were amazing. Super fresh, soft and sweet. Not hard to understand why they are now a 5th generation shop!


We then hit The Beaver House to check out bait and tackle for fishing. Its been around for 40 years and have an amazing assortment of rods, tackle and bait. In addition to just stocking goods, they are a wealth of information and advice. I love that Grand Marais values a healthy local business culture, so refreshing and sadly unique.


We then made our way back to the lodge to pick up firewood and bait. The lodge was pretty sweet, reminded me a lot of the Lodge in the movieĀ Dirty Dancing. I wouldn’t mind doing a lodge trip sometime in the future…


Bait and permit in hand and wood over shoulders, we headed back to camp to try our hand at fishing.


Audrey was dubbed the Master Angler. Too bad the fish were apparently not impressed with our democratic efforts…


While we waited for the bobber to dip, we snuck in some reading. We always shoot to read one book. For this trip, Neil chose God is not Great by Christopher Hitchens and I chose…


Wicked! by Gregory Maguire. Definitely not new, but I saw it in a used bookstore a few weeks ago and decided to give it a try, since the play has been so successful. I always lean toward reading fantasy fiction novels on vacation. The forest feels like the perfect environment. Has anyone read this? I heard there is more in the series, are they worth the read?

After a few bites and one very small large-mouth bass, we decided to pack it in and make dinner. Burritos were on the menu!


I won’t lie, the men did ALL the cooking on this trip and Audrey and I loved it. Neil made ground hamburger with spicy sauce on the Jetboil which we then paired with cheese and salsa on tortillas. Super simple and unsophisticated, but perfect!



Look out, that badass burrito has a knife!


Blurry, but you get the idea.


Enjoyed with a Black Butte Porter by Deschutes Brewery (OR). A little heavy for summer, but still really good. We heart dark beer. After dinner we settled into our chairs with drinks and s’mores before rolling into bed. Stay tuned for Day 3!


  • Leah says:

    I love the Grand Marais donuts! And the town in general. Do yourself a favor and drink some Surly on tap while you are there. There is a neat bar with it right on the main drag across from the harbor.

    • Neil says:

      Hey Leah!

      I actually did have some Surly Furious on tap while I was there. Tasted like an IPA and was very good. I was surprised when I saw it on tap so I had to have it.

      • Leah says:

        Brilliant! That’s one of my husband’s fav beers. Next time you’re back in MN, let me know if you need a beer buddy. He loves to share MN brews with folks.

  • Leah says:

    D’oh. I forgot you are back home already. Next time!