NOTE: IN ORDER TO BETTER SEE PHOTOS IN THEIR FULL 1600 PX. RESOLUTION, VIEW THEM IN THE ALBUM FORMAT BY CLICKING ON THE LEAD PHOTO OR ANY PHOTO IN THE POST. This is especially true for landscape shots. Thanks to Mark for the idea of adding this alert so the photos can be seen at their best!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Pike Lake Backpack Site on the IAT

I haven't been doing a whole heck of a lot of anything I normally do thanks to what turns out to be carpel tunnel in both hands, but today I left work at 2 o'clock and drove an hour and a half to Pike Lake State Park to do some hiking on a new segment of the Ice Age Trail.

The campground at Pike Lake is very small with only 33 sites and if I'm not mistaken is first come first serve only. The campground loop was full but there was one backpack site left right on the Ice Age Trail which is of course what I would prefer anyway!

It's only about a five minute walk in from the parking lot and the three sites are very generously spaced I figured there was at least 150 feet between my site and the next one. Of course it is primitive with no water or electric but there is a porta potty if one is desperate.

After setting up I consulted my Ice Age Trail book and got on the trail right away.  

To do the complete segment is 3.3 miles but I figure from the campsite to the end on the Glassgo Drive was about 2.5 miles and luckily it was all downhill from the top of the kame because it is pretty hot here these days!

It's also a little drier than usual which will be worrisome if it continues but for now that means mosquito population is low so I will take it without complaint.

Going down was easy, but of course the return was all up, up, up! I timed it well though as the temperature started dropping for the evening.

5 miles round-trip was a lot for a girl who has been spending a lot of time on the couch binge watching past seasons of  "Orange is the New Black".  After a good nights sleep in my tent and another hike tomorrow I'll be binge watching again on Sunday because the new season is here on Netflix! I can't wait to see what those crazy inmates get up to this time. "Trust No Bitch" is Piper's new favorite saying, but I still love Taystee's classic line "that's some bullshit... Shit to the bull!"

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The Midwest at Her Best

Wondering when to visit the Midwest?  My favorite time here is early June when the daytime temperatures are warm, the nights are comfortably cool and the mosquitoes and humidity don't yet rule the summer.

I've been taking evening walks close to home, enjoying these days before I start fleeing the oppressive heat and traveling north with my tent.

I don't know if it's a coincidence or just good luck but I haven't even encountered any ticks yet!

I've been busy with work, family, doctor appointments and the never ending battle with housework and laundry.  When I pull myself away from those things and venture outdoors I'm always glad I took the time for myself and have discovered a way to find balance physically and mentally.

When I drove over to Glacial Park just over the state line in Illinois the other night I got lots of exercise circling the fields and climbing the kames...

Nighttime was on its way, rain was rolling in, so I broke into a light run for the last mile, loving the feel of the brisk breeze on my legs as I ran past the swaying grass.

Wayne is working double shifts this weekend so I'll be heading north to do some camping and knock a new segment off my Ice Age Trail list.  Hopefully I'll be able to add listening to the coyotes sing to my list of things I've been lucky enough to enjoy this week!