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By Emily Jackson

Nick and I started our trip out to Wisconsin early. Packed the car at 6am,
dropped the dogs at Mom and Dads and off we went. Now one thing that is
incredibly difficult and more expensive being young is Rental Cars. Most
rental car companies you have to be 25 in order to even get a car. Luckily
being the type of person that plans things way to far in advanced I had a
car rented that I payed extra for but you have to be 21. Ten minutes into
the drive I learn that Nick has an expired license that is in the process of
getting extended since he can’t leave the country until his Green Card is
approved or denied. And he certainly cant rent a car. I had an hour and
half drive and a two hour layover to make sure it got organized before I
arrived. Sure enough with the help of the Cookeville Honda Dealership,
Swallows Insurance Agency, and Enterprise I got more paperwork and insurance
information faxed to enterprise then I could ever know what to do with and
succeeded at renting my first car!

We arrived into Madison, got our pimping Chevy car and away to Minneapolis
we went. It was a four hour drive and we stopped at a Super 8 with Jaccuzi’s
and indoor pools! Not bad for the first night of Vacation.

Midwest Mountaineering is located in Minneapolis and it’s different to see
an outdoor shop as successful as this one dead center of a city! The fact
that they carry just about any type of outdoor equipment you could ever
imagine is definitely helpful. It started years ago when ago when a guy
sold climbing gear out of his van and is now one very impressive and unique

We got to meet several of the staff, all of whom were super friendly, bubbly
and keen to learn anything they could possibly learn about our product.
After visiting with the staff we went down to the "Expedition Room" where
they have chairs, projectors and big screens to show films. Perfect for Face
Times first screening outside of Nicks office! Several people came down and
watched and had many questions at the end. Several of the people weren’t
even kayakers so they were asking how to get into whitewater kayaking so
they could see some of these amazing places.. Good to see more people

After the film we went back up to the cash register area, stole some more
free coffee and donuts, got advice on what to do in Wisconsin and away we

After another 4 and half hour drive started getting close to White Lake,
Wisconsin, home of the Bear Paw Store and Resort. When we arrived Scott was
working the bar for a local birthday and Jamee was in back fixing up some
amazing pizza! Nick and I enjoyed the Greek Salad and BBQ Chicken pizza and
oh my goodness it was delicious!

I hadn’t visited Bear Paw in several years and had never seen the new place
since the tornado. For those who don’t know, Bear Paw got hit with a huge
tornado and it not only took down all the buildings but it also took out a
huge path of trees. It almost looks like someone took a lawn mower through
the area!

But the new place is building up fantastically. The new cabins are very
quaint and Nick and I enjoyed our stay tremendously!

The snow is starting to melt so get ready for the awesome Wolf River!

Big thanks to everyone who made our trip so smooth! Hope to see them all
again at Canoecopia this weekend! And maybe see you as well!

Happy Paddling and time to gear up for Spring!!

Emily Jackson

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