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Out and Back - Phil's Rambling Rants
June 28th, 2008
07:15 pm

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Out and Back
I tried hiking the Out and Back trail at Kickapoo.  I've been wanting to explore this area since last summer, but the signs for it warn that it's 7.5 miles and rugged, and I wanted to be sure that I had a day with decent weather and that I was in shape enough to be up to the challenge.  It turns out that I shouldn't have worried; the only thing that was challenging, at least where I got, was figuring out where the trail I was supposed to be following went.  In addition to the hiking trail, there are mountain bike trails and horse trails, and they cross each other as they wind through the area, and I lost the blazed hiking trail about 2.5 miles in and wandered on the trails I could find.  For as long as I was on it, the Out and Back trail was more level and easier walking than any of the other trails at Kickapoo, to say nothing of the Lake Mingo trail at Kennekuk.  Perhaps it suddenly got genuinely rugged around the next curve after I got confused and strayed -- but it seems unlikely.

Still, it was a very pleasant walk; there was an overlook over one of the former strip mine ponds that was so pretty that I ate my lunch there and then stayed another hour and read a book.  I'll definitely visit the area again, and probably intentionally follow the route that I took by accident today, minus a couple of places where I started down a path and then came back when I decided it was the wrong one.

I had the camera and macro lens.  There were many dragonflies, and I believe I got some good pictures of them, and of various other flowers and bugs.  There was a box tortoise on the path when I had about one mile to go, and I took a bunch of closeups.  Maybe I'll even start the process of getting the photos onto the computer, looking through them, and perhaps even posting some.  Unfortunately, I need to make dinner now and I need to be in bed in a couple of hours, so pictures tonight are about as likely as flying pigs.

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