Go north young man, go north!

Flying and driving a Switchblade would be such a great way to go to and around Minnesota and enjoy the peace and beauty of that lovely state. Having been born there, I have to admit that I’m a bit partial, but it really is a nice place to be, whether you like lakes, open country, wildlife, woods, or hunting and especially if you like to fish.

There are actually about 11,000 lakes – they don’t count the small ones and there are usually just a few boats out on the lake at any one time. Even as a kid, the beauty and peacefulness of the lake made me want to just sit quietly out there in the boat, dangling my line in the water while I enjoyed the scenery and watched the loons. Did you know that loons can dive under water and go a very long way before coming back up? They are large birds, often swimming with their young riding on their back and the loon is the Minnesota state bird.

I loved being out there whether the fish were biting or not, but they usually were. Mmmm, those walleyed pikes are good eating! The northern pikes are bigger, stronger, really put up a fight and also taste great. Unfortunately, they have many tiny bones to pick through, which is not the case with walleyes. We called the northern pikes fresh-water barracudas because they have teeth and can bite right through your line!

Even with so many lakes to choose from, limited time and commitments force most people to visit only those nearby. In addition to the international and regional airports, Minnesota has over a hundred smaller general aviation airports. Whether you wish to visit lakes in open country or those surrounded by forests, a Switchblade would enable you to drive straight to your cabin on the lake upon landing, without worrying about a rental car, which many smaller airports don’t have. I never had a chance to fly in a small plane over Minnesota and I think it would be fun to use the Switchblade to go lake hopping.

Another Minnesota feature that draws me, which not everyone is familiar with, is the ‘east coast’ of Minnesota. People laugh when they hear that, because everyone knows that Minnesota is in the middle of the country. I’m talking about the North Shore, the eastern part of the state that borders on Lake Superior. You can’t see across that huge lake, so it’s like being along the ocean. The entire length of the North Shore is very scenic, with little harbors, beaches, lighthouses and lovely fishing villages. Nearby are forests and parks with streams and waterfalls, all the way up to the Canadian border. The North Shore also gets very colorful fall foliage which rivals that of the eastern seaboard and trips there would be so much more fun in a Switchblade, instead of having to drive a rental car from a large airport.

My favorite place on the North Shore is Grand Marais, one of the nicest little harbor villages. My husband and I visited there several times and I loved sitting in the quiet harbor, watching the wildlife and then eating dinner at one of the small nearby restaurants. There is also a wonderful little shop not far from the water with the best homemade doughnuts I’ve ever tasted! You can smell them a block away! All in all, the east coast of Minnesota is definitely a ‘must see’.

Just writing this makes me want to take another trip to my home state and I’d really like to go in a Switchblade!

– Marcia Winborne-Graven

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