N is for…

Nashwauk, Minnesota. Can you see me in the first picture?! (Clicking on a picture will open a new window with a larger version of the pictures.)

Nashwauk is located about four hours north of the Twin Cities between Hibbing (boyhood home of Bob Dylan) and Grand Rapids (birthplace of Judy Garland). It’s deep in the heart of “Da Range” (aka Minnesota’s Iron Range), which you can tell by the “From Timber to Taconite” bit on the sign below:

The Hawkins mine, which abuts the eastern edge of the town, was the first mine in Itasca County.

The old mine is surprisingly beautiful. They didn’t fill in the huge open pit when they closed the mine; instead, they turned off the pumps that were keeping it dry.

Some of the hills of taconite tailings are not quite so lovely, alas.

Just outside of town, this structure always mystifies me – some sort of radar installation?

Isn’t it amazing how different the sky looks in those two pictures? Yet they were taken within a few hundred feet of each other.

Edit: I was just informed that I somehow missed the wonderful sign “Nashwauk, Gateway to North of Nashwauk.” (The Boundary Waters? Canada? The North Pole? The mind boggles.) Drat!

34 thoughts on “N is for…”

  1. HEY! you literally posted while I was reading your other post!
    Thats pretty cool how they turned the mine hole into a beautiful lake.

  2. The radar installation reminds me…last week we were driving to a book sale and we passed by a water tower. Julia asked me what it was and I told her it was where the city kept water and she said, “No, Mummy. That’s my workshop. That’s where I do my work.”

  3. Radar installation? I thought perhaps it was an homage to a soccer ball? Maybe a giant golf ball on a golf tee for guys to bow and pray to??

  4. That strange object appears to be a dopplar radar weather station. I live in South Dakota and we have several throughout the state.

  5. Definately a radar. They call it a Ra-dome, as the spherical structure covers the whole antenna. My husband works with the FAA’s airport surveillance radars and you see a lot of em around here 🙂

    Odd things, aren’t they?

  6. We loved the note about the sign. Bren and I posit that if you try to approach Nashwauk from the North, the Gateway acts as a spacewarp, and you find yourself driving North again.

    Minnesota is a grand and mysterious place…

    (welcome back!)

  7. Wow… that lake shot; very beautiful.

    Only 900+ people live there? Sweet! I think I’d like to go explore there. 🙂

  8. Those are great photos! Looks very calm and relaxing… Nice to be away from the big city, isn’t it? I would think it’s gotta be pretty close to the Canadian border?

  9. the pics make it look all nice and cool. which i think it is not. i think that it must be very HOT and HUMID, but you have focused on the good parts!

  10. Mama T: “No, Mummy. That’s my workshop. That’s where I do my work.” Ahahaha. That kids is so friggin CUTE!

    Would working in a water tower give you a nose bleed?

    Beautiful pictures! I love that you travel around.

    I meant that in the innocent way, sickos.

  11. Mama T: “No, Mummy. That’s my workshop. That’s where I do my work.” Ahahaha. That kids is so friggin CUTE!

    Would working in a water tower give you a nose bleed?

    Beautiful pictures! I love that you travel around.

    I meant that in the innocent way, sickos.

  12. Chris – you are bringing back memories to this Iron Range girl! You cannot know how many times we passed those same sights, as my uncle (with twin nieces a little younger than me) lived on the outskirts. And 😉 you mentioned my hometown too 😉

    The mine pit picture especially brings back memories of standing high up on a ridge, seated on the hood of an old Datsun stationwagon with Mr.J, just gazing in wonder at the reclamation of nature.

    If you ever get up that way again – I have a MUST SEE lake resevoir trail that I think you’d love. You can sit on big glacial rocks in the mist of the dam there and see little rainbows all around you.

  13. Doppler Radar Tower? I was going to guess water tower or phallic statuary. Nice pics!

    Glad to hear you went unharmed in your last Chaos photoshoot. Maybe he’s just bored with the bibs. Try mittens. Or socks. 😉

  14. Hi Chris. Do you visit Nashwauk often, or were you just driving through? I live up here on the range (although I’m not FROM the range, I’m FROM St. Paul) and work in Hibbing. Great pictures (as always).

    Marianne
    Range Roving Spinner
    rrspinner.blogspot.com

  15. There’s a mine in Butte MT where they left it open and there’s a viewing platform – it’s filled with extremely toxic water! Not so pretty.

  16. Chris, I know this is an old post, but that I am pretty sure that your unidentifiable building is perhaps an observatory. I am betting there is a pretty durn good telescope in there.

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