I peeked in on a couple of unmarked paths, but ended up taking the Lumber Ridge Trailhead to the trail that heads out to Spruce Flats Falls. As with almost every hike I've been on I had the trail to myself for most of the time. I passed two guys coming out who told me to "be careful" out there.
|Pennywort at the trailhead|
The trail got a little rocky, a little narrow, and in some spots a little steep. Add some on and off again rain to the mix and it was a nice little adventure. Good thing I brought along my umbrella.
At one point the rain was coming down really hard, but there wasn't any lightning so I pressed on. I got a phone call from Katrina when I was approaching this cool staircase. She happened to call me every day when I was on the one point in the trail that actually had cell service. How did she do that?
My persistence paid off and I arrived at the falls right when the only other people there were leaving.
My new camera is so great that I don't even have to bother with taking any tripod with me. Thank goodness because the camera and lenses are heavy enough without adding any extra weight.
The rocks were wet but easy to get around on to get the shots that I wanted, but I could see why the other hikers had warned me to be careful and I used good judgment.
I did set up the Gorillapod for a shot of the falls that included me, even though I was a wet, muddy, frizzy mess.
As I was starting the 1.5 mile trek back to the Institute I heard a little rustling beside me. I caught the slightest movement out of the corner of my eye and spotted this fella.
All the little critters I see would be hard to catch with companions along to distract me. I enjoyed my quiet moment with the amphibian who thought that if he just held still enough I'd never see him. Still, it's not going to be the same at home...I might finally have to look into joining the Kettle Moraine hiking group.
I didn't find the Jack in the Pulpit, but I would have never known about this trail to the falls if I wasn't looking for a patch of wildflowers. Sometimes it's better finding what you weren't looking for, right?
We finished our drive home today, but don't worry, I still have at least a week's worth of posts about our trip left to share!