So today's post isn't about making things, but I went to another state park over the weekend and I thought I should share the photos since it was quite the lovely spot. Plus, I can't help it, I'm still so excited about having a camera that takes pictures that aren't blurry!
The park was called Ledges State Park and it was about 45 minutes away, near Ames, which is where Iowa State is located. A friend mentioned it to me as being a place that had actual hiking trails (rather than the paved multi-use trails that are so popular around here, and come in handy for biking) so I figured it would be a great way to spend part of my Sunday.
You should know that I love hiking. Love it. I'd do it most days if I could and for hours on the weekend. But, it seems, Iowa doesn't feel the same way as I've yet to find a place where I can walk in the woods for even just an hour without winding up back where I started (which is a parking lot area filled with people grilling meat—which is a perfectly acceptable summertime activity, but mildly frustrating when I'm trying to walk away from populated areas).
I've decided to remain hopeful, however, because as you can see the possibility exists. I did enjoy the scenery and that the spot was quite wooded. And I liked seeing this area of native grasses and flowers. And taking pictures of it.
And this stream that was a popular place for kayaks and fishing.
Which brings me to my request. If any of you Iowans know a place that has/is:
1. unpaved hiking/walking trails that are, say, at least 4 miles long
2. in an undeveloped area, such as in a preserve or state park
3. not such the hot spot for motorcycles
4. within two hours from Des Moines
I'm remaining hopeful that such a place exists. I know this state is nearly completely planted with corn and soybeans, but all I need is one spot—just one!—to walk on a dirt trail in the woods and I'll be a happy girl. And at the end of the day if this doesn't exist here, well this just means two things: I will start going camping regularly in neighboring states and I will become much better friends with my bike. Oh and I'll remain a fervent fan of walks in Waterworks Park. Not such a horrible alternative (I say reassuringly to myself, as I force myself to look on the bright side!).