S suggested a girls’ weekend trip a while back, and zeroed in on this past weekend, since her fiance was happily camping on the side of some mountains in Canada then. Originally, our plan was to fly away somewhere, and we kept checking out ticket prices to anywhere around the States really. We almost decided on Colorado, but in the end neither S nor I felt like we could justify $400 tickets, not when we’d flown for $200 multiple times. Next, we looked into Warren Dunes, Michigan, but it was impossible to find any accommodation that didn’t have a two-night minimum restriction for the summer. Incredible. So Door County Wisconsin it was.
We departed Chicago after work on Friday, and arrived at our lodgings close to midnight. Nevertheless, we were up and ready to start the day by 8am. 🙂 Headed to Al Johnsons for Swedish pancakes (amazingly, there was a 15 minute wait at 830am!)
My favorite bit of the trip – paddle boarding! We paddled to the tip of Peninsula State Park from the other side of the bay in Ephraim. This paddle board was long and wide, and easy to balance on. It was slower going than on a kayak, but so much more fun. 🙂 S was game for a try, but we had to prod Susan quite a bit before she gingerly gave it a go. But she quickly got comfortable with it though! I’d have loved to explore the nearby Horseshoe Island, but the other two were happy with just two hours on the water.
Next activity: Wine tasting… we stopped by two wineries, both of which were quite forgettable. Grape wine is made up in Door County, primarily from grapes sourced from elsewhere, but the wines are barely drinkable. Yelch. Apparently though, wine tasters in this part of country never spit; I asked for a bucket and the lady thought I had horns or something. The area is known for their fruit wines though, and the cherry and ligonberry wines were a hit with the other two 🙂
Door County is known for its fish boil, so we booked ourselves a fish boil dinner. Kinda kitschy… essentially the cooks set up an enormous iron cauldron in the backyard, and throw buckets of potatoes, onions, and fish into the bubbling broth. The fish is cooked for around 8-11 minutes, following which the “boil master” throws a half cup of kerosene into the flames to send up an impressive blaze of flames into the air, and the soup froths over the top of the cauldron. The fish was simply seasoned with some salt and butter, but was fresh and quite satisfying.
The aftermath of the prior day’s storm – crisp and cool weather, with a strong breeze and whitecaps. Not ideal for paddle boarding, but a haven for kite surfers. While Susan sat out breakfast following the heavy meal of fish the night before, S and I took a short stroll along the water front to admire the surfers, before hitting A Chef’s Hat for a most scrumptious breakfast. Killer blueberry scones! Only second to those Tate Modern scones I had in London 5 years ago now. Hehe.
All in all, a great and relaxing girls’ weekend getaway!