|A not-so-decent but still effective panoramic view of the river|
My childhood is filled with very fond memories of exploring the trails of state parks. I've been all over the hills in Lime Creek (Mason City), Phelps Park (Decorah), Grandad Bluff (LaCrosse, WI), Effigy Mounds (McGregor/Marquette), and Backbone State Park (Strawberry Point).
|Can you make out the house? I can only imagine how amazing the view is!|
This weekend, I finally hit the trails for the first time this year. I spent an hour on the Cedar River trail, which follows the bluffs along the river. It's so gorgeous and peaceful and has an air of the Mississippi about it.
This is a hilly, rocky, tree branch-laden path with some reasonable inclines. I see people of all ages and shapes out here though, a lot with dogs and little kids.
|Starts out gentle - there are several cute bridges like this|
|Then you get to your first set of steps|
|This is a little lookout point once you climb to the top of the first bluff|
|Hard to see the depth, but this is the view from the lookout point|
|The trail continues atop the bluff|
|Dropping off a bit on a shoulder|
|This is the sharpest incline, though it's hard to tell from the picture how steep it really is|
|Almost to the top!|
|A beautiful view to reward your legs for the climb|
|On the way back - lots of exposed rock faces to marvel at|
|Spotted this little guy - like a muskrat but had a bushy tail though ... Help anyone?|
|If you need some variety for working out, this is a great way to do it|
I have yet to hit the end of the river trail and there are several others I haven't tried that extend into the hills away from the bluffs. I just read on the website there are Native American mounds, which has me super intrigued.
Places like Palisades make me supremely happy - I love being outdoors and hiking. Throw in bluffs and a river and I'm in my element.
What are your favorite parks?