Hike 5Mama and I did this hike last Sunday. It was at a place Mama hadn't visited in a long time because the part of this preserve that Merlin liked best went through ravines and so his stroller couldn't go there. He'd get disappointed when she wouldn't take the turn to the ravines so she stopped going there all together. The hike was supposed to be around the non-ravine loop, but someone messed with the trail markers and made it so it looked like you were supposed to go through the ravines. Mama knew the preserve well enough to know it wasn't really the hike, but she wanted to take the ravine part anyway so we did but it did explain all the confused people we met early on in our hike who were asking us where the parking lot was. It was great that we did do the ravine because I got to see two deer up really close! The first one I saw was only about 8 feet away and the second was about 10 feet away. Mama got a picture of the second deer before I got hysterical.
Official Hike: 3.1 miles
Our Hike: 4.9 miles
Hike 6Mama and I took this hike yesterday. There was a silly sports event on TV that afternoon so Mama thought that, even though she knew that this hike was always jam packed with bikes, there might be fewer bikes out because of the game. (As an aside, Mama was watching TV the other night and the guy was saying how the big evolutionary leap that humans made was when they developed a desire to be part of a group that was larger than their own gene pool. This, he said, was shown in modern life by how much people love watching professional team sports. Mama turned to me and said, "Well, I guess I skipped that evolutionary leap.") Anyway, Mama was WAAAAY wrong! Even before we got to the trail we saw 13 bikes. By the time we had finished the very short hike we had encountered 38!!!
Official Hike: 1.8 miles
Today, because the weather was so nice we took another hike. Mama had never been to this part of a big preserve before so she didn't know what we'd see, but she hoped that another silly game would make it less crowded. We think maybe this time it worked because we saw very few people. Mama and I don't understand why people wouldn't be out on such a nice day. Better for us though! It was a very nice combination of woods and prairie with mowed trails and gravel trails. We did the official hike, two side trails and part of the other half of the preserve which Mama had been to before.
We saw two praying mantises.
This one is the one that didn't scare me and make me jump straight up in the air.
The gravel trail through the woods. You can see how sunny and nice it was today.
Mowed trail with boardwalk
When we got about 1/3 of the way through the upper half of the preserve I told Mama I'd had enough and wanted to go home. She said it would be silly to turn back and follow our trail home since we were only about 50 feet from a loop back, so I let her convince me to continue walking around the loop. I didn't let her take the big loop though and insisted we take the short loop back.
STOP READING HERE, AUNTIE NAOMI!!!
Just before we got back to the connecting trail we came across this guy. Mama says she's seen bigger earthworms. He was so tiny I didn't see him at all. Even when Mama stopped to take his picture I couldn't tell what she was looking at and almost stepped on him three times.
See the black strap on the left? That's my leash. That is how tiny this guy was!
Official Hike: 1.9 miles
Our Hike: 6.5 miles