During the Tuesday program, a presentation is featured following the discussion of upcoming activities and other announcements. Presentations range from multimedia and informative discussions on topics such as past trips, wilderness preservation, equipment demonstrations — to tips & techniques such as bicycle maintenance, backpacking for beginners, how to hang a bear bag, wild flower identification and other outdoors-related topics.
If you would like to schedule a presentation or have ideas/requests for a future Minnesota Rovers presentation, contact Beth G.
If you have any other questions about Minnesota Rovers, please e-mail us at email@example.com
Upcoming Programs & Presentations
- March 31: America’s Greatest Adventure — A Through-Hike of the Appalachian Trail
It is a common dream to hike the Appalachian Trail (AT), and people come from all over the globe to hike it. Wally Miars ( aka Silver Streak) will discuss his experience on the AT. You will hear funny stories and learn interesting facts about hiking the world’s greatest trail. Silver Streak found out that hiking the Appalachian Trail is not about a walk in the woods. Come and learn what he found out it was all about. The old and young alike will enjoy hearing this story. Presented by Wally Miars.
- April 7: Las Vegas’ Big Secret
The secret is not how to beat the slots or the blackjack dealer, but how to find a wilderness hike nearby. Less than an hour from the Vegas strip are the Spring Mountains, which include a lot of hiking trails and Mount Charleston, their highest peak at 11,900 feet. This is a picturesque but harsh environment, with a giant mummy and gnarly zombie trees! Presented by Jen Oberg and Barry Shillingford.
- April 14: Pannier Bike Tour on the Mississippi
Six Rovers biked 400 miles along the Mississippi River Trail from the Lake Itasca headwaters to St. Paul. This is the initial segment of Route 45 of the US Bicycle Route System, which runs all the way to New Orleans. This summer, we plan to go downriver from St. Paul to Galena or Quincy, Ill. Presented by David Byrne.
- April 21: Adventure in Nepal
In 2011, two Rovers traveled to Nepal on a photo tour with a company called Grasshopper Adventures. They visited the Kathmandu Valley, the Chitawan Tiger
Sanctuary and a part of the Annapurna circuit, in the company of a professional travel photographer. Presented by Bob and Noel Jarvis.
- April 28: New Zealand by Bike
The South Island of New Zealand provides a smorgasbord of venues for outdoor adventures — seashores, plains, rainforest, mountains, lakes, rivers, glaciers, vineyards, fiords, grasslands, waterfalls. Join Sue for a whirlwind photo tour of how she explored the island by bike, plane, train, boat, helicopter, foot and van. Presented by Sue Wittkop.
- May 5: Sailing on a tall ship
Only a lucky few get to sail on a full-rigged, oceangoing ship like the Sorlandet. Built in Norway in 1927, it served as the Norwegian pavilion at the 1933 World’s Fair in Chicago and, during WWII, as a leisure vessel for German submariners.
It’s now a sail-training ship, and when it visited the Great Lakes in 2013, it accepted short-term trainees. A local sailor will tell us what it was like to be part of the Sorlandet crew on a Lake Michigan voyage and how people can sign up when the tall ships visit again in 2016. Presented by Arne Stefferud.
- May 12: Spring Intro Show
Find out more about all the fun things Rovers do at this digital slide show set to music. Afterward, meet club members and ask questions about the club and the kinds of trips and activities it offers. Held at the Bloomington REI store.
- May 19: Gear Swap
Here’s where you’ll find quality gear from people who know their stuff. Are you trying a new sport and need gear? Find it at the swap!
Do you have unused or extra gear and it’s cluttering your house? Sell it at the swap!
Set-up starts at 6:30 p.m. in Como Park in St. Paul (first outdoor meeting of the season). The swap is open to the public; feel free to bring friends and family.
Past Programs & Presentations
- March 24: The Border Route Trail
The Border Route Trail (BRT) is a not-to-be-missed hike along the Minnesota / Ontario border. With incredible views from many overlooks and 65 miles of trail through the BWCAW and semi-wilderness, plus an additional 20 miles of connecting trails, the BRT is often cited as one of the top trails in the United States.
We’ll show photos to inspire you, let you know how to do a moderately paced BRT through-hike in five days and provide tips on day hike and combined canoe/hike opportunities on the BRT and connecting trails. You’ll get advice on when to go, where to find the best stands of old-growth timber and most spectacular overlooks and, if you promise not to spread the word, where to find that hidden mine shaft. Presented by John Elliott and Ed Solstad.
- March 17: Nice Ride Minnesota
Hopping on a bike for a joy ride or a quick trip to a meeting is fun, easy and convenient, thanks to Nice Ride Minnesota. Find out how to check out one of those green bikes you see all over Minneapolis and St. Paul, so you always have a bike handy. You can also learn how Nice Ride is working locally and nationally to bring more people to biking through community-based equity programming, a bikes-by-prescription program, a Greater Minnesota vision and development of bike share’s first industry association. Presented by Tami Traeger, Director of Outreach and Sponsor Relationships for Nice Ride Minnesota.
- March 10: Hiking in Patagonia
Tag along on a trip to these rugged plains in Argentina and Chile, at the southern end of the Andes mountain range. Gretchen will share a snapshot of an REI trip in January with 14 other adventurers, including photos, the route traveled and lodging arrangements. Presented by Gretchen Zunkel.
- February 24: Natural Wonders of Bolivia!
New Rover Andrea Prichard just spent 2.5 years living in Bolivia and took the opportunity to visit some of the most extreme landscapes on Earth. From the largest Salt Flat in the world to circumnavigating the highest volcano in the country (base at 14,000 ft) to the Amazon rainforest to dinosaur tracks to Lake Titicaca. While focused on natural beauty and trekking, there will be some fascinating cultural slides aswell from her time among the Andean Aymara people. Presented by Andrea Prichard.
- February 10: Adventure Travel in southeast Asia
In 2012 Steve spent seven weeks traveling in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia by planes, trains, boats and on foot. See photos of the beautiful landscapes, people, ancient ruins and temples. Learn how independent travel in SE Asia is easy, safe and inexpensive. Presented by Rover Steve Mueller.
- February 3: Tour de Mont Blanc: Hiking the French and Italian Alps.
Come share our hiking experience hiking hut to hut for 6 days and 5 nights in the French, Swiss, and Italian Alps. September weather was great, packed about 15 lbs each and stayed in huts with showers, food service and beer on tap! Presented by Mike Hogan.
- January 27: Whitewater Paddling in the Midwest? You betcha!
Probably the two biggest reasons Minnesotans don’t try whitewater kayaking or canoeing are that they A: don’t think there is access to decent whitewater from MN, or B: don’t know where to go to learn the necessary skills. This presentation will have a little something for paddlers of all skill levels from the absolute newbie who has never been in a boat, to those with advanced rodeo or creek skills who would love to find new rivers to paddle. Learn about the differences between river running, playboating, and creeking; and different gear and skills needed for each. Enjoy a photo tour of rivers with whitewater within one,two, four, six, ten, or fourteen hours of the Twin Cities. Last but note least, find out where you can learn how to whitewater kayak or canoe. Presented by Melissa Hirokawa.
- January 20: Our Adopted Wood Lot.
Part of the mission of the Minnesota Rovers is to keep the places we play in beautiful! As one of a number of conservation activities, we have adopted part of a woodlot in Elm Creek Park Reserve. Come and hear how it started, why we chose that location, and what we hope to accomplish there. (Die, buckthorn, die!) Presented by Tom Harris.
- January 13: Bicycling in Switzerland, Austria, and Germany.
Learn about bicycling on Europe’s vast network of signed bicycle trails in this presentation that will take you from Switzerland’s Engadine Valley to Austria’s Tyrol on the Inn River bicycle trail and through southern Germany on the Danube River bicycle trail, part of EuroVelo 6 from the Atlantic to the Black Sea. Presenters will bring their collection of Esterbauer guides, which make planning a trip easy. Presented by Beth Gauper and Torsten Muller.
- January 6: Via Ferrata in the Italian Dolomites
Via Ferrata is a form of climbing that uses fixed steel cables for protection, allowing faster movement with minimal gear. Most via feratta routes range from easy but exposed hiking to moderate vertical climbing. Come see photos from four via feratta routes we did in the Dolomites of Northern Italy. Presented by Brian & Jane Paulson.
- December 30: How Not to Trek to Choquequirao
Thinking you would like to see amazing Inca ruins while visiting Peru but have either missed the boat on permits for the Classic Inca trail or don’t want to deal with the crowds? Choquequirao is just what you are looking for! Come see the presentation done by one hearty Rover who trekked the 64km trail in four days. Learn from her mistakes and see the photos that prove it was all worth it. Presented by Kim Kangas.
- December 23: Boating up the Danube — Budapest to Nuremburg and Prague
A river cruise up the Danube — visiting towns along the way. Through the countries of Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, and Slovakia. Presented by John Elliott.
- December 16: The USDA Forest Service — 50 Years of the Wilderness Act and How You Can Get Involved in Urban Conne
The federal Wilderness Act just celebrated its 50th anniversary — come learn why wilderness is important and the impact of this Act in Minnesota. Teri Heyer is the Urban Connections coordinator for the US Forest Service in Minnesota and will also share highlights about the Forest Service and the Urban Connections program. Presented by T. Heyer.
- December 9: Exploring beautiful Norway
In May 2014, for over 11 days two Rovers visited farm country near Gjøvik and took a train north of the Arctic Circle and explored Bodø. Find out where the strongest tidal current in the world is and where the sun never sets. Presented by Jen Oberg and Barry Shillingford
- December 2: Canoeing the Kazan River in Canada’s Nunavut
A three-week canoe trip in August 2004 on the Kazan River in Canada’s Nunavut, west of Hudson Bay in the largest wild place remaining in North America . Presented by Jim Peterson.
- November 25: Cycle for Change
A representative from local bike shop Cycles for Change explains their impact on the community through volunteering, bike maintenance and instruction programs. Learn about their vision for a bike friendlyneighborhood as well as empowerment for individuals through safety and connection.