How well do you read maps? Do you know how to navigate without any GPS, Satellite or Internet service? This skill of map reading and navigation was vital in upper Wisconsin. I had forgotten the big atlas and had only a small map of the individual 50 states. The WiFi or Internet service was spotty, our … Continue reading Fear of Maps
“Always increasing illnesses, husband and his family issues, and operating a business for a few months had taken its toll. I was constantly sick with something. Head cold. Herpes. Pain in neck area. Back issues. Breathing issues. I was using essential oils to keep going. And then one night, I could not sleep. Sitting on … Continue reading My Remarkable Journey
Upper Minnesota wilderness gave us the opportunity to kayak and canoe in the Boundary Waters near Canada. Hiking trails were not as easily available as the water – so we switched to upper body exercise for two days. The temperature was in the 80s – perfect for watersports. Another Midwest Hiker Blogger had mentioned the … Continue reading WARNING to WARNING
Hiking. Ten Minutes from Home. Sometimes the magic delights you right where you are. I am trying to look for those places. Daily. What places delight your visual senses in your neighborhood? Riding Horses. Thirty Minutes from Home. Celebrating the unusually warm October in Colorado Springs, we rode horses through the yellow woods. Where can … Continue reading Local Delights
The Presidential election of 2020 is over. Hopefully. We will survive with battered bruises as a country. The division between rural and urban will be seen in the voting statistics for sure. When we traveled this summer, we stayed in rural areas throughout the states we visited. There was a definite bias in political signs … Continue reading Look for Green
In America, we normally do not hike on private property. The North Country Trail goes from Vermont to North Dakota and passes through many private fields. There are gates to be opened AND closed and small waterways. In August, the temperature soared and the bugs and humidity were constant companions. In Switzerland, where I learned … Continue reading Land Air Water Animals
Throughout this summer I was losing a friend to cancer. She and I were neighbors, spiritual sisters, cancer survivors, and hiking buddies. Her illnesses slowed her hiking over the last couple years, but she never stopped hiking and walking until she could no longer breathe from her lung metastasis. It is hard to not see … Continue reading Losing Her
The hardest thing in my hiking as I age is change. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. Isaiah 46:4 NIV My desire to hike long distances above four … Continue reading Sixty Hiking
What lessons have I learned from three weeks on American roads? Do not be afraid. We are adaptable to disruption in our lives. We are informed. We traveled over 5000 miles, visited all but one of the Great Lakes, drove through 17 states in 21 days (6 days in New York with family). Hiked in … Continue reading Road Trip Revelations
Road trips are not my favorite way to travel.
East of Glenwood Springs, Colorado up in the Glenwood Canyon lies a rest stop off of I 70. It presents the Best of Colorado: Raging Colorado River, Grizzly Creek feeding into the River through the valley, boulders, rock path, crashed trees and those cerulean blue skies. And clean restrooms. It is also the place of my old … Continue reading Perfect Perfection Destroyed
Where did these seashells come from on the side of a mountain path
We have to transition from training to enjoyment of hiking. I have decided my word for the pandemic is adaptable.
“Stay in this land for a while, and I will be with you and will bless you. For to you and your descendants I will give all these lands and will confirm the oath I swore to your father Abraham. I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky” Genesis 26:3-4a NIV “We worked early and late, from … Continue reading Car Camping
The black cow lowers its head and watches us carefully as it chews on the grass. In the distance it has seen the little white dog in the grass. The little white dog becomes intertwined with its genetic calling. A schipperke was bred to nip at the heels of horses along the canals in Belgium. Taz, our … Continue reading Cow Jumped over the Moon
Facebook groups are a marvelous way to find people whom like the same things you like and have great information. I found two groups this year: “Women who Hike Colorado” and “Colorado Springs Lady Hikers”. You have to be approved to be in the group, but I enjoy the posts, pictures and the hiking information very much. Some … Continue reading Speed Hiking
Everyone who visits Colorado Springs is bombarded with “Have you visited Garden of the Gods?” It is a park of towering red and white stones located on the west side of Colorado Springs. There are pictures of visitors to this area in the 1800s in wagons. This year in 2020, we have updated bathrooms (do you detect the … Continue reading Garden of the gods
Spruce Mountain can be seen from I 25 at the Greenland exit between Monument and Larkspur, Colorado. There is an old ranch house, an Open Space area (good in the winter for snowshoeing), set off the gravel road over a couple of old sets of railroad tracks. Spruce Mountain has a large parking area and porta-potties at … Continue reading Cloudy Spruce Mountain
Less than four miles should be easy. It should be a delightful day. We should have enough time before it gets too hot. The dog should be alright with a creek. There should be shade. We should have enough water – three 16 oz bottles. I should not burn as I have sunscreen on my face and arms. We should … Continue reading Sunstroke in Canyon
Check the weather. Take your hiking pack. Water. Treats, leash, bowel and waste bags for the dog. Look at the app and/or map to plan an unknown journey. Boots. Walking Stick. Camera/Phone. We are prepared for an early morning 4 mile hike in town on a new trail in Palmer Park. Or so I thought. Within 10 minutes of climbing on the north side … Continue reading Unexpected Change
Seven Bridges Trail in Colorado Springs is located high up in Cheyenne Canyon, and represents ‘perfection and completion’ to me. Colorado perfection. Red Rocks. Green Pine trees. Lime green Aspens. Blue Columbine flowers. Flowing Streams. No bugs. Cold, Clear Snow Melt. Rocks and huge boulders. Cerulean Blue Sky. Cool temperatures in the morning and hot afternoon. Moderate hiking difficulty for 3.7 miles climbing … Continue reading Perfect and Complete Trail
Trees. A short drive north of Colorado Springs is the area called Black Forest. From the air, the trees are so thick the area appears black. But how did it get its name? This hike is called Section 16 in Black Forest. We have other areas called Section 16, so what does this name mean? The Romans first … Continue reading Four Miles of Trees
Go back in time. People in America are moving westward to explore and settle and find their fortunes. They use trains to navigate across country. It is the middle 1800s to the mid 1900s. There are few roads across America and fewer cars, and passenger travel was still a viable option. Then the world changed. The Freight lines replaced the passenger … Continue reading Deserted Land: Rails to Trails
In the age of Covid-19, we must be adaptable. We wanted to walk in one area in the mountains, but it was closed. We went to Mueller State Park, but there can be no dogs on the trail, so that did not work. We finally drove to a favorite hike – Dome Rock Wildlife Viewing. In my five times … Continue reading Country Walking with Social Distancing
Devastation. Seven years have passed since fire destroyed Black Forest Regional Park north of Colorado Springs in 2013. We came here to become engaged in a little outbuilding I loved. The shack was miraculously not destroyed in the fire, and has been renewed by an Eagle Scout. It is still a special place to us. The burned out … Continue reading Renewal Takes Time
Palmer Park is a 200-acre park in the middle of my city of Colorado Springs. It is popular with mountain bikers, hikers, and dog owners. There are miles of trails and I have hiked here frequently for 22 years. On a busy cloudy weekend, parking was unavailable close to one of my favorite trails, so we drove … Continue reading New Old Paths
Palmer Park is a favorite of people in Colorado Springs because of the off leash dog park, vistas, horse trails, rock climbing, and available access. With 27 miles of trails at 6,338 to 6,597 feet above sea level, there are easy, intermediate, hard, short (0.7 mile) and long (3.8 miles) trails to explore. (alltrails.com/parks/us/Colorado/palmer-park) But what … Continue reading Falling into Change
My name is Taz, the Schipperke, and I am the reason my people walk so much. My people and I do notice the incredible view and blue sky with the mountains in the distance, but only when I am not distracted. If I am on a mission, they have to watch out for me, and my … Continue reading Yelling! Fear! Come!
I am Taz the Wonderdog! I go with my people to the ‘Open Space’, after the Park visit, which is a big cleared dirt path in our neighborhood area with no sidewalks or homes when we want a long walk. We go together three miles – most of which I am illegally off leash. I have learned … Continue reading Friends, Strangers, Watch it!
My name is Taz, for ‘Tasmanian Devil’ and I am an active eleven-year-old handsome cream Schipperke. People talk to me and tell me I am handsome, but they do not know what kind of dog I am. Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks – I learned to sit on command last year … Continue reading Sniff, Smell, Sniff, Smell
In Colorado in the USA, Spring is coming in April. We get teasers of sunshine mixed with five inches of snow within two days. With the statewide lockdown in our homes, the neighborhoods are flooded with families, kids and of course dogs. Our dog Taz, views the lock down very differently. There are two words in our house … Continue reading Walk! Yes! Twirl! Happy!
The Pikes Peak Greenway trail meanders up and down hills from the Edmondson Trailhead on Woodmen Road in Colorado Springs, north to the Air Force Academy. Beautiful homes are hidden along Monument Creek or in bluffs above the train tracks on the Pikes Peak Greenway trail. One home even had hoodoos in their backyard decoration. We … Continue reading Hailing Rattlesnakes
A trip to a favorite park is always uplifting for my spirit. We returned to Red Rocks Canyon Park in Colorado Springs in early March 2020, and started up Hogback Valley on a Friday morning. We knew there would be few people, but there was a new sign: Trail is MUDDY. Walk through the Mud. Do not … Continue reading Stand Firm in Mud
It was the first hike of 2020 up a mountain and I knew it would be hard. The snow on the trail was a mixture of ice, slush, hard pack and muddy. Life resembles this trail with a mixture of easy, fast, cautious, and not pleasant paths. It changed so quickly from one type of snow to … Continue reading Snowy Path Resembles Life
Calgary sits on the plains of Alberta, Canada at the confluence of the Bow River and the Elbow River. It is the third largest city in Canada and is best known for the Calgary Stampede and Rodeo and for hosting the Winter Olympics in 1988. “God will provide rain for the seeds you sow. The grain … Continue reading Cal-Gary Canada
The foothills of the Canadian Rockies are similar to the foothills of the Colorado Rockies: mountains in the distance, blue skies, cold wind, water flowing in streams and rivers, and flat plains in the distance. After leaving Canmore and heading for Calgary, we headed south to the Kananaskis Valley and ski area. Once again we warned not … Continue reading Hike in Kananaskis
This 3-mile hike Bow River hike started in town and ended in an open field with old abandoned miners equipment and houses in the distance. The field is a favorite place for the elk to access the river and to bed down in relative safety for the night. We saw no wildlife as we headed back … Continue reading Bow River Hike – ELK
The Bow River in Canada has a total length of 587 km (365 mi) and flows from the Canadian Rockies through the town of Lake Louise down to Banff, and the less famous town of Canmore. We walked along the Bow River on wonderfully paved and unpaved path that led us away from town. We had been warned … Continue reading Bow River Hike #1
Bunnies: There are bunnies everywhere, especially black ones. They have no fear of people and can be seen downtown, on side streets and grassy fields. There was a local movement to kill the overpopulating bunnies because they have no natural predators. The people of Canmore took the bunnies into their homes until the purge stopped and then let them … Continue reading Canada, Hey??!! Part Two
But he brought his people out like a flock; he led them like sheep through the wilderness. He guided them safely, so they were unafraid; Isaiah 78:52-53 NIV When you see wildlife on or near the road, what do you do? The 1A, Bow Valley Parkway, is a back road between Banff and Canmore, Canada that … Continue reading Wild Beasts are the Best
There are magical places where natural beauty is unlike anywhere else you have seen. Lake Louise in Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada is one of those places. Visiting in mid-October gave us a chance to hike the lakeshore with only 100 hundred people instead of the thousands who visit in here in the summer. The snow … Continue reading Turquoise Water
Everyone knows of it. It is ubiquitous for volcanic eruptions in the world. Everyone has heard of the volcano, Mount Vesuvius, covering Pompeii with 19 feet (6 meters) of flowing ash, burying everyone and everything in AD 79. It was not truly searched until it was archeologically explored in early 1800s. The sheer size of the … Continue reading Pompeii – No Words are Adequate
Do you know this cemetery exists? I found it searching for cemeteries near Rome. Italian Cypress, Roman Umbrella pines and hedges outline the area. There are 7,861 American graves in ten sections covering 77 acres in Anzio/Nettuno south of Rome on the coast. It was founded two days after the Anzio landing on January 24, … Continue reading Sicily/Rome American Cemetery
Spoleto, in Roman times, held a strategic geographical position. In 774, it became part of the Holy Roman Empire. The Roman ruins include a Roman theater, Roman arches and a part of the Roman road. The Duomo was begun in 1100s and has an unusual feature of eight Rosettes. The mosaic floors were a delight. You have to … Continue reading Guide Paulo in Spoleto
The ridge between northern and southern Umbrian forests grows the magical black truffles famous in many Italian dishes. On our hike to the ‘ecotourism’ Bartoli Farm, it begins to rain as fog rolls in and covers the mountains with mist. ( Patrico sul Monteluco, firstname.lastname@example.org) The farm is a working farm and is available for dining tourists and … Continue reading AGRITOURISM – Truffle Farm
“Andiamo, Let’s Go!” Heading toward Spoleto, there is a mountain road that leads to “sacred woods”. Old growth forest rewards you after many harrowing hairpin curves in a tour bus. It is quiet. Moss is growing on trees and the paths have wooden cross fences. It is raining lightly. Our guide was from Spoleto and has memories of … Continue reading Sacred Woods of Spoleto
What do you believe in? How do you protect the earth and its creatures? Who was St. Francis of Assisi? St. Francis of Assisi is known to be the patron saint of animals, but he is so much more. He restored the life of the priests to be more Christ like after he had a vision in … Continue reading Who is St. Francis of Assisi?
How often do we listen to the perceptions of others regarding our hiking, traveling, and vacation plans? We want the best experience for the time and money invested so we ask questions. Mine was “What is your favorite place to visit in South Dakota?” Badlands, Mount Rushmore, Black Hills, Sturgis, and then nothing for the rest … Continue reading Wrong Perception
In 2020, I was able to achieve a big hiking goal for my life. Finally. I hiked on four of the longest trails in America: Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide Trail, and North Country Trail are all part of the National Scenic Trails and the Colorado Trail. I have waited years to have the time to … Continue reading Straight Paths