Northwoods Auto Tour - June 24-29, 2017
Northwoods Auto Tour
June 24–29, 2017

by Brian Cassler

Attention all of you roadies looking for a new adventure: we have one ready for you for the Summer of ’17! We’re going to Canada by way of two great old roads, the Lincoln and Jefferson Highways. Interested? Want to hear more? Here we go…

Photo of Surf Ballroom
Surf Ballroom. Photo by David Wilson.
Photo of Mary Tyler Moore statue
Mary Tyler Moore statue in Minneapolis. Photo by Meet Minneapolis.
Photo of Mississippi River headwaters sign
Sign at the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Photo by Mark Evans.
Photo of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox statues
Statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox in Bemidji, Minnesota. From Wikimedia Commons.
Photo of Winnipeg at night
Winnipeg at night. Photo by Krazytea.

Those of you who have traveled with a Lincoln Highway tour group in the past know that you’re in for a great trip. All arrangements are made for you in advance, from the meal stops and attractions to the overnight accommodations, it’s all planned. All you need to do is register, decide what you’ll be driving, and be there! The tour will be at a leisurely pace averaging 175 miles per day. Any type of motor vehicle is welcome — old or new, two wheels or four, large or small. We suggest having at least two people per vehicle so that one can drive as the other navigates, but many folks have gone solo in the past.

The tour will begin in Denison, Iowa on Saturday, June 24, immediately following the annual Lincoln Highway Conference, which is being held there through that week. The day will be spent on the Lincoln, ending in Ames with the opening dinner. Rise and shine on Sunday morning, and east to Colo, where we’ll join the Jefferson Highway, then north toward Canada.

Throughout the next five days, we’ll experience all that the northern end of the Jefferson Highway has to offer. You will visit the Surf Ballroom and pay tribute to “the day the music died.” The state of Minnesota beckons with a visit to the great city of Minneapolis. We will rekindle memories of Charles Lindbergh and Mary Tyler Moore, learn about meat packing, fishing, and the logging industry, see some unique architecture and landmarks, and visit the headwaters of the Mississippi River at Lake Itasca. Travel the remote, back roads which are the Jefferson — some paved and some not. And don’t forget that wonderful Scandinavian hospitality that will welcome us to the great north woods. All of this, plus the Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox statues await you!

The tour will conclude in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada at the terminus of the Jefferson Highway. This city is complete with much of its British heritage to see, feel and share. From there, you may travel to your next destination as you please. Those eastbound may chose the Trans-Canada Highway to Ontario, Lake Superior and the Soo Locks. Westbound on the same highway takes you to Alberta and all the splendor of the Canadian Rockies. It’s all there for you this summer. Don’t forget your passport!

Our tour planners have been busy working on a great experience for you. Paul Gilger, Scott Berka, LuAnn Hurd-Lof, Stan Ennis, Bill Wilcox, the Cassler family, and many others look forward seeing old friends and meeting new ones on this Northwoods Tour. Registration information is available on the LHA website, or you can email me at or call me at (330) 456-8319 during normal business hours (Eastern time). Because of availability of lodging and size of venues, we are limited to 40 vehicles. Registration closes May 1, 2017.

So make your plans and don’t delay! We all look forward to seeing you in Iowa in June.