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Old 01-12-2009, 07:17 PM
 
9,807 posts, read 6,450,585 times
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I do agree on SW Wisconsin being a nice place.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:53 PM
Status: "More snow please" (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Madison, WI Metro Area
15,395 posts, read 21,471,703 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marmac View Post
In Minnesota,whether one needs irrigation or not has everything to do with soil type and little to do with annual rainfall

The valley along the Mississippi River is very sandy so there will be lots of irrigation heading North of MPLS all the way to Brainerd (in that valley of "sugar sand")

There are also areas of sand that run along hiway 71 from Long Praire to Sauk Centre and along 71 near Wadena and near Park Rapids ( potoatos grow good in irrigated sand)

Sugar beets are usually grown in areas of the state that have few rocks and heavy ,black,soil.
Thank you for that interesting info. I have not been to the northwestern portion of MN before. Hopefully I will visit again in the next couple of years.
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Old 01-13-2009, 12:41 PM
 
Location: Mahtomedi, MN
989 posts, read 1,891,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GraniteStater View Post
I guess Park Rapids would be on the western fringe of the northwoods in a transition zone? True, MN does not have a lot of irrigation, but I did see some center pivots on the maps. Another poster said sugar beets were a common crop in this area.
Beets are common crop in the Red River Valley. Fits in with the overall theme that MN has a diverse landscape.

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Old 01-14-2009, 08:16 AM
 
2,278 posts, read 3,910,964 times
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I grew up north of the Twin Cities in Wisconsin and have spent most of my adult life in northern MN, northern WI, and the U.P. of Michigan. You will have no problem hunting and gardening in any of these areas. Now, we need to look at your other ideals. I have direct experience with Ely, MN and the Ashland, WI area. Take out your map and look at the locations of these places....for both areas, Duluth is the "metropolis." We would go once every couple months with a list we had built up to do a major day of shopping. Some people went once a month. Of course, we were able to get everything we needed in our towns, if needed (and we did get most of it from our local town).

Homeschooling won't be a problem either--many people in the area do. There is Waldorf school in the Penokee Mtns (don't get excited, they are extremely old mountains, so now they are just hills), by Ashland. There are many people around Ashland and the Bayfield pennisula that try to live off the land. There are also numerous orchards and berry farms around Bayfield, if you want a really long growing season (due to the Apostle Islands keeping the water warmer, longer, hence warming the wind that comes off the lake). There are many people in/from Ely that have lived in Alaska/moved to Alaska.

Both areas offer tons of recreation opportunities for you, as well. Both areas, but especially Ely, breed outdoorsmen! Ely has a good-sized art community with several events throughout the year. Ashland has a college (Ely has a community college, the two are linked in several areas, actually) that brings in speakers all year long.

I think it will come down to land prices, which I can't advise you on. I think there is more potential for cheaper land around Ashland. It will also (possibly) depend on what you want politically. Both areas end up being liberal, but I think Ely may be slightly less so because of Ashland's college population.
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Old 01-15-2009, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Elkins, WV
374 posts, read 716,023 times
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Wow! Thanks for the very informative post. It really helps to hear from people that are living there or have lived there. Realistically, I know that we can plan all day and it really comes down to the fact that we just need to go check it out. This is a difficult thing to do from Alaska, so we are planning to pack it all up this summer and take a LONG drive. With any luck I can get a temporary nursing job close by. I very much appreciate all the info, though. It will help refine our search area. I will probably be asking more questions as the time gets closer and I figure out where I can get a job.
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Old 01-15-2009, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Sebeka, MN
3,011 posts, read 2,909,898 times
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MeganAK - Nursing is in HUGE demand in this area. I'm going to recomend Park Rapids for a Visit if you want to see a small town that isn't too small but not big either. Under 4000 residents and the down town area is like stepping into the past. A Mainstreet that will remind you of the 50's and 60's. There's a nice Hospital right there in town too. Plenty of nursing jobs. There are many resorts surrounding Park Rapids, the summer time appeal is of that escape but we live here year round. It's not just a vacation for us, it's a life style.

We have one of the most beautiful State Parks, Itasca which is the Headwaters of the Mississippi. Here's that link; Itasca State Park: Minnesota DNR And for the PR:
Park Rapids MN Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce

Some Friends of mine own a resort on Big Sand Lake, The Evergreen Lodge Resort. They have 18 lake side cabins so quaint and perfect. The loons can be heard always and Bald Eagles soar above constantly. There's a Par 3 golf coarse there too. Here's the best thing; NO PHONES AND NO TVS. That is how you relax and get away from the stress of every day life. They are Old School owners, been doing it for 50 years... No website. I can smell the pine forrest just thinking about it.

Anywho, you get the point. There are MANY small towns and places of interest. I thing though that if I were looking myself, I would consider Park Rapids simply because of how perfect the area is. You can hike/bike miles of trails, snowmobile this time of year. I can put you in contact with Dog Sled tours, half & full day or over-night but being from Alaska that's hardly going to be anything special. Heading west from Park Rapids theres Detroit Lakes. There are three outfitters there where you can rent Tubes and Float in a river for hours on end. This one is highly recomended.

Head East of Park Rapids and you can find Walker MN with the entertainment of Casinos, and one of the country's best music fesivals each summer. North of Park Rapids is Bemidji, home of the Paul Bunyon legend and Babe the great blue ox. Yet another wonderful big town in Minnesota. Along the way to Bemidji you can stop in Emmaville, one of the smallest towns in the country, Population 4.

The scenic territory of the Park Rapids region is packed with Wondeful Nature, Farm Land and Pine Forrests. It's an endless oassis of Natural Beauty all year round.

If you should decide to look at this beautiful area and have any questions... feel free to ask.... Need any help, we'll hook you up.
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Old 01-16-2009, 12:08 AM
 
2,278 posts, read 3,910,964 times
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For nursing, check out Duluth as well--they have four hospitals. It is a larger city, but I believe the commute is doable from outside the city and that you wouldn't have to go too far out to be in the country.

If you have any more questions, you can always DM me and I will try to help. I'm currently 2,000 miles away...*weep* but in the least I could direct you to different resources (and good places to stay and yummy places to eat at). If I won the lottery tomorrow, I would be moving north ASAP (okay, so I would enjoy this eternal Arizona spring until winter stops up there--I'm not that crazy!) and it would be a hard pick between Wisconsin's Lake Superior Shore and Ely, MN. (and I have the same dreams of living off the land as much as possible)
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Old 01-18-2009, 07:48 AM
 
3,861 posts, read 3,314,772 times
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Look at Grand Rapids MN. It has a blend of the iron range feel with Brainerd. When you travel the state you know what this means. Basically you get a blend two styles of Northern MN landscape. The town has all of the necessary infrastructure like hospitals, larger retailers, etc.

See Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce Minnesota MN Resorts Motels Lodging Vacations

Your best bet is to spend a week and just drive and get the feel. I'd agree with not ruling out WI.
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:02 AM
 
2 posts, read 5,629 times
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Default Land in MN

Quote:
Originally Posted by MeganAK View Post
My husband and I are from Alaska and we are feeling like we want to move back to the "Lower 48". There are many reasons why, but the trouble is that we have no real direction in terms of where we want to go. Initially, we wanted mountains, snow in the winter, and someplace more rural. We have looked at Maine, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, the Dakotas, etc. We have had varying issues with all of the above places and my brother mentioned Northern Minnesota (he is in St. Paul). We are interested in buying a decent chunk of land (at least 40 acres), hunting for meat, growing as many things as we can for food, and having a state where we can raise a family, possibly home-school, not be surrounded by millions of people, and still have access to family, cities, cultural/educational opportunities, etc. I know, we probably want someplace that doesn't exist. We have ultimately decided that we could give up the mountains if a place had enough of the other qualities we desired. We enjoy doing outdoor activities, we like to hunt, fish, backpack, bike, kayak, climb, etc. We have found some areas we are interested in looking and are planning to check them out in more detail when we drive down next summer. I am a Nurse and would eventually be looking for part-time work somewhere near where we live. Our options are limited because we really like winter, and we really like snow, but we also want a decent place to grow food in the summer. I know, I know, we want it all! Anyway, any thoughts? Suggestions? Similar desires or experiences? Thanks in advance. I haven't seen much on this forum about Northern Minnesota, but what do you think?
Read your ad about land in MN. I have 22.3 Acres near Bemidji, MN which borders 560 acres of county land. It is near the public access of Wolf lake, and has its own little lake on the property. Asking $62,000. If interested I could e-mail photos of the property. Thanks Ken
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:10 AM
 
2 posts, read 5,629 times
Reputation: 10
Default MN Land

Quote:
Originally Posted by MeganAK View Post
My husband and I are from Alaska and we are feeling like we want to move back to the "Lower 48". There are many reasons why, but the trouble is that we have no real direction in terms of where we want to go. Initially, we wanted mountains, snow in the winter, and someplace more rural. We have looked at Maine, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, the Dakotas, etc. We have had varying issues with all of the above places and my brother mentioned Northern Minnesota (he is in St. Paul). We are interested in buying a decent chunk of land (at least 40 acres), hunting for meat, growing as many things as we can for food, and having a state where we can raise a family, possibly home-school, not be surrounded by millions of people, and still have access to family, cities, cultural/educational opportunities, etc. I know, we probably want someplace that doesn't exist. We have ultimately decided that we could give up the mountains if a place had enough of the other qualities we desired. We enjoy doing outdoor activities, we like to hunt, fish, backpack, bike, kayak, climb, etc. We have found some areas we are interested in looking and are planning to check them out in more detail when we drive down next summer. I am a Nurse and would eventually be looking for part-time work somewhere near where we live. Our options are limited because we really like winter, and we really like snow, but we also want a decent place to grow food in the summer. I know, I know, we want it all! Anyway, any thoughts? Suggestions? Similar desires or experiences? Thanks in advance. I haven't seen much on this forum about Northern Minnesota, but what do you think?
I forgot to mention there is a Large Merit Care Hospital in Bemidji, which is about 15 Mi from the property. Ken. [email]kwahnsc@blackduck.net[/email]
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