Winter Hike

Got a fair-weather day up and coming? Grab it and go on a hike! We’d been waiting for just such a day to whisk my hubby off and show him […]

ndnlodge8Got a fair-weather day up and coming? Grab it and go on a hike! We’d been waiting for just such a day to whisk my hubby off and show him some cool stuff we’d discovered with Farmer John and his two apprentices on just such an adventure hike a couple weeks ago…finally, Saturday arrived and by one o’clock, the temps reached 47 degrees! Wonderful!

Not far from home are some Indian trails…trails that we’d never bothered to explore. Do you have areas of interest that only seem to be interesting to the tourists? Find out! I’m sure glad we did.

ndnlodge2The main attraction on our hike, and the part that we kept a secret from my dh, was a fabulous full-size replica of an Indian wood lodge. Evidently, there used to be 20-some of them along the creek in this wooded area, but they’ve long since disappeared. Recently, a group decided to generate interest by reconstructing one…and it’s become a magnet to our climbingfamily, we can’t wait to take homeschooling friends there next spring!

I’ve interspersed this post with pics from both our visits…it was a grand adventure BOTH times!

PIC #1–approaching the wood lodge

PIC #2–looking down into it from above…this is the “smoke hole”burnedouttree

PIC #3–adventures along the trail…climbing a huge downed tree


PIC #4–checking out a burned out tree

PIC#5–playing “elevator down” with daddy, you know, climb up a tall tree, and grab the “bendy” tree next door and “down you gooooo…”

12 replies on “Winter Hike”

This looks like lots of fun! We were hoping to go to the park last weekend, but it was just too chilly! Your pictures remind me of my caving trip! And climbing that tree would be so much fun!

Everyone’s “backyard” has something waiting to be discovered. With the right attitude and perspective, and an observant eye, there is history, geology, botany, exercise, and more waiting outside your back door.

I have enjoyed spelunking (cave exploration) in many states. In a recent research project, I came across historical documents indicating a large underground cavern system, unexplored in modern times, not that far from here. If true, it would be the longest known cave in the state. Last used over 150 years ago during the pioneer and Indian days, its entrance was covered and last known in the 1930’s. Like many caves, this one has two inter-twined legends of buried gold. Anyone for a treasure hunt?

As for ghost towns, my bride and I spent some time yesterday together meandering down some back roads to explore four ghost towns in our area. Only a handful of people live in the four communities combined. We enjoyed the old stone flour mill, now silent along the river, once a prominent landmark, in one town. Old abandoned stone houses and dilapidated buildings are what’s left of once thriving communities. Hopes and dreams lived and died in those towns once upon a time.

Making memories with family on a backwoods hike, exploring trails and being together is a treasure to be cherished. The price is right, and the interaction is more than therapeutic.

I’m always amazed at how many people have their noses flat to the daily grind, unable or unwilling to see beyond the schedule to find the joys of life in the surrounding terrain. Get out there, out of the rut, and start making memories, before all the kids are grown up and gone and you wonder where the time went. They’ll remember the walks in the woods and the family fun a lot longer than the other things that take up their time.

Leticia, evidently, ghost towns do indeed exist! See Farmer John’s comment! I remember visiting some in my childhood, the experience stayed with me! Hope that’s ALL that stayed with me, lol! Just kidding! Yes, you and your boys would get a free thrill from following some trails…and if you discover a cool Indian Lodge, or something similar, maybe your hubby will be convinced to tag along as well! 😉

John, a large underground cavern system in OUR state? Cool! You are full of adventures…that would be the discovery of the century…I’ve often wondered if there were any natural discoveries waiting to be found, or if all the gold had been mined out in the gold rush days, etc. Maybe we’re all too busy to follow our dreams in the new millennium…you’ve got my curiosity piqued by the mention of all those ghost towns…

Yeah, MIn, my explanation would still baffle you, if you sniff at zero degree bundling! The pics in the post were taken on two different occasions…it was slightly more cold the day we went with John…it was sweatshirt weather the day we went with hubby! I’m afraid I wouldn’t handle your winters too well!

Treasure hunting combines research, history, observation, discernment, map & compass skills, and often the use of metal detectors and other equipment. I have been a treasure hunter of sorts for many years. The old saying is “treasure is where you find it.” While I have panned for gold in the Rockies, and recovered gold, silver, jewelry, antiques, coins, and Indian artifacts, I have concluded that the search is almost as exciting as the discovery.

Searching the woods and prairies for wild edibles, or exploring the woods with family and friends, or digging for treasure in the pages of the Bible – all of these are part of the treasure. Treasuring your relationships is an important part of life, not to be overlooked. Most treasures are deep and seldom obvious, you have to search and dig deep to find them.

So, whether I’m searching through ghost towns (recently) or researching a nearby $3 million in gold coins buried by an Indian chief – the property of whom I walked again today, or being invited to investigate the discovery of Noah’s Ark in Turkey (3 years ago), I am always curious to discover something from the past. Finding valuable things is the reward of diligent searching.

“If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.” (Pr 2:4-6)

“The search is almost as exciting as the discovery”! Kind of like the planning of a big event is almost as fun as pulling it off!

We are surrounded by treasures aren’t we, and the sad thing is, we always think our “good fortune” is as yet unachieved or waiting around the next hurdle…Contentment with godliness is great gain, right?

Finding you guys just down the road was great treasure to our family!

New is fun! And a lake nearby gives a nice rural feel to neighborhood life, I’d imagine! Glad you are moved in and getting back in a routine, you had a crazy fall!

I took a group of students on a cross country trek some years ago where we were to stay overnight in a new suburb of a big city in a fancy house surrounded by a big new housing development.

I told our hosts I was going to take a walk and be back “in a while.” I needed to stretch my legs. My students tagged along and we explored a small creek that ran through the area. We waded down the creek, pant legs rolled up, and explored a small wood. When we returned barefooted, with our treasures, shoes in hand, the host asked us how we had gotten wet. We said “down at the creek.” She said, “What creek?” “The one right down there,” we pointed, less than a quarter mile away. She said she didn’t know there were any creeks nearby.

And so, for some, it is impossible to see past the blinders of the routine and familiar. I do not believe her shoes ever left the pavement at any time in her life. From carpet to garage to fancy car to a high rise skyscraper and back to her mansion.

Over supper she quizzed us on rural life – things she found to be incredulous, as if we had walked out of the 18th century. Had we ever milked a cow? Had we ever shot a gun? Did we really eat out of our own garden? Can our own vegetables? Did all the women really wear long dresses ? Were we really going to preach open air to people on the street? She laughed at how naive we were – how simple minded – how “rustic.” But she knew nothing of our joy and peace in serving Christ. She indicated that we all lived in a fantasy world and she in the real world. I was certainly out of place in her world, a phenomenon she couldn’t decipher. But I will trade my simple quiet life in the country for her “existence” any day of the week.

Afterward, when we left there, my students and I discussed how sorry we felt for her to never have known the simple pleasures of God’s creation. We felt sorry that she couldn’t see what she was missing. We felt sorry for her wealth induced existence, keeping up with the Jones, and measuring herself by her neighbors’ lawn, neighbors’ cars, neighbors’ pools, and neighbors’ fashions.

None of us were willing to trade places with her in her fancy house. Not for all the money she had . . . It was an opportunity to see, hear, and experience the emptiness of material wealth, and a great lesson for my students they will never forget.

Sounds like a sobering lesson, that’s for sure! I know my husband looks around our few acres and sees endless “to-do” lists, and I used to be the same way…but in the past couple of years I’ve really been grateful for the richness of our life here. I know I have many friends who might see my life here and pity me, or think that we surely must be simple-minded to love this life so much. It’s less of a bothering thought to me now than it used to be. Maybe that’s what getting older does for a person! I know that if God allows, we’ll be here for many years and eventually have things exactly the way we want them. Sure, I’d love to have it all done now…ie: a bigger house so we could spread the children out of their shared bedroom…but the sacrifices made have sure added to our character in their own ways.

Nothing but the country life for me!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *