Viking statue on a hill.
Today was an interesting day as I made my way from Mineral Springs to Kathryn. But, really, most days on the trail are interesting!

Last night was super windy, as I noted. This morning seemed calmer. Thanks to Mary, I got on the trail around 8:30. The first several miles were a road walk from Mineral Springs to and through Fort Ransom. Just as you get into town, there’s a viking statue on a hill. I don’t think I would have known it was a viking without Mary pointing it out to me. Some guys randomly decided to put a viking statue there, she said, and did so via helicopter. Interesting!

Heading Out from Mineral Springs

The path then wound through Fort Ransom, which is a small town that curves around the Sheyenne River. On the far side of town, the trail leads through Fort Ransom State Park. Interestingly, the path passed near my campsite! By then it had gotten quite windy, and I was hoping my tent would stay put for the day.

After the state park, the trail wound along the river, then up and down the hills that are becoming more frequent here. The National Scenic Trail marker.views were quite nice. Eventually I popped back out on the road. But not for long,

Navigating Fields and Pastures

In the afternoon, the trail left a gravel road and went into a pasture. For a while, there was no discernible path. Just dried cow pies and knee-high vegetation. Then, suddenly, a trail/trench in the pasture appeared. Whew! But when the trail went back to join the road, there was one of those hated post-and-barbed-wire fences that are so hard to open and close. I got it open and passed through, but could barely close it. I hope the wind didn’t blow it open.

There was more road walking for many miles. Shortly before reaching Kathryn, the trail again went off-road into farmland and pastures. Initially, I was on a farm access road – easy peasy. But then the path was either trekking through knee-high Trail marker.grass that hid uneven footing, or walking on the edge of a newly tilled farm field, where the earth was soft and squishy and hard to walk on.

I was glad to get past that stretch, only to come once again to a cow pasture with no discernible path and high vegetation. But eventually I found an actual path and made it to Kathryn, Yay!

My hubby, Ed, will meet me tomorrow night in Valley City for a few days of hiking. I’m excited! Oh, I neglected to note that Mary does not know the reason behind the random street signs where there are no streets. Her daughter has a house on a hill above one of the signs, so they are guessing it indicates a home above. Or maybe that the street continues across farmland/pasture. Interesting …


ND NCT miles today: 20.8 (33.5 km)
ND NCT miles to date: 118.4 (190.6 km)
Total NCT miles to date: 3,020.4 (4,860.9 km) 
Total NCT miles to go: 1,579.6 (2,542.1 km)

©2018 Melanie McManus – All Rights Reserved