See, I'm wiggling my toes in the sand!
Now let me 'splain.
If you come to Kickapoo from the west, getting off the Interstate at Oakwood, there's a crossroads with a sign that says Sportsman's Lake 1 mile left, Park Office 1 mile forward. I've probably gone through that crossroads a hundred times, but I'd never been to the left. Today I decided I would correct that. I headed more or less north on the unpaved road for what seemed like more than a mile, though I didn't think to check the odometer. Just when I was wondering if I'd missed a turn, there was a sign to the right. The gravel road became paved and I was in state park again. I parked in the first place I found, which was a boat launch area, and I started exploring. It turns out to be a fairly extensive area; there are several little parking areas, at least 4 boat launch areas, multiple ponds, and a lot of pretty scenery. One thing that's lacking are hiking trails; it's only developed for fishing. At the end of the paved road, there's a place where what looks like a hiking trail goes off into the woods. I went down it, and after only a couple hundred feet, I came out along the river at what I can only describe as a beach -- a long flat stretch, maybe as much as 50 feet wide and a few hundred feet long, ranging from fine sand to moderately coarse gravel. It's river bottom if the river is high, but the river is very low now, so most of it is dry.
I'm not much of a beach guy, but I couldn't resist taking off my shoes and enjoying the sand. I stayed where it was dry -- I figured the water would be rather cold, and I don't like having wet sand stick to my feet. I walked around the area and took pictures. It would have been a fine place to sun-bathe if I'd wanted to. My very own beach, 15 minutes from my house.
Here are a few scenic views of the area.
This is the view more or less as I came out of the woods.
This is the view downriver.
This is the view upriver, which I found especially lovely.
Of course we can't have a good photo tour of a beach without some pictures of interesting things on the beach.
Driftwood, Middlefork style.
Some pretty rocks on the beach. Even on a day when I set out to take scenic pictures I can't resist a few closeups.
And of course we can't have a visit to the beach without a
To finish my tale, I have to mention that the one sour note was that some assholes had been drinking beer and left their cans scattered around. When I was ready to leave, I picked up the cans on the beach and put them in the case that they'd also left. They must have swilled most of the case before they arrived, because the case was only half full. As I started up the path, I saw some more trash and went to pick it up. I failed to see that the plants this pile of trash was under were stinging nettles, so I got to feel it. No good deed goes unpunished.