Hiking Shades State Park

Last weekend my husband and I went on another hike in one of Indiana’s beautiful state parks. Shades State Park is about an hour’s drive west of Indianapolis on Sugar Creek. To get there we drove through miles of flat farmland, but the park itself has gulleys, canyons and gorges. Really beatiful! I particularly loved all the spring wildflowers.







It was definitely a rugged trail. Ibuprofen was my friend for several days afterwards!








We had to climb ladders to get through several of the gorges.




Overlooking Sugar Creek.

Winter Hike

It snowed six inches in central Indiana on Friday, so my husband and I went for a hike in Brown County Indiana. We weren’t going to be deterred by a little snow! Well, acutally I was. We hiked four miles of the total six mile trail. I just couldn’t slog through any more of the six inches of virgin snow. We did see several hunters, though. It is somewhat disconcerting to be out in the beautifully silent woods and come upon five men in camo with bright orange accessories, all toting riles. We didn’t see any deer. They were smart enough to stay hidden.














The reward was having lunch at the famous, but inconveniently located Story Inn.




Hiking Morgan Monroe Forest

Last weekend my husband and I took advantage of the glorious Fall weather to go on a three hour hike in the Morgan Monroe Forest. The colors were wonderful and the hills were challenging. I’m still sore three days later, but it was worth it!




There were ravines and caves.



Ponds that reflected the impossible blue of the sky.


Lots of moss – on the trees, on the rocks and covering the ground next to the trail. And then my favorite – fungus!


Could this be any more intricate and beautiful?

And science geek that I am, I even looked up the name of the tree with three pronged leaves that covered the forest floor – the Sassafrass tree!


I absolutely love Fall!

The Red Mountains of Sedona

The first week of February found me and my husband in Arizona. I had some business in Phoenix and then we headed up to Sedona. I had been there as a child ( 37 years ago!) but my husband has never been. We were completely awed by the beautiful red rock formations and countryside. We hiked everyday and the weather was in the 60’s during the day and cold at night. Chris asked “I wonder what it’s like here in the winter?” “It is winter!” I replied. It was that nice. Sedona is also renouned for having spiritual energy vortexes on many of the rock formations. We could definately feel it.

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This is Coffee Pot Rock. Right behind our hotel.

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We walked around Bell Rock and Court House Rock which took about 2 1/2 hours.

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Guess what this is? You can probably figure it out, but I wasn’t sure at first. A stool, perhaps? They are ‘cairns’ to mark the hiking paths.

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This is Cathedral Rock. Both Bell Rock and Cathedral Rock are energy Vortex sites.

Then we traveled to the Grand Canyon by way of Flagstaff. We loved the fun and funky vibe of Flagstaff. It is at the foothills of the San Francisco mountains. Great skiing!

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The Grand Canyon really needs no explanation. My dinky little camera can’t do it justice, but it is awesome! We hiked along the rim. No hiking down into the canyon for us, although we did talk about doing a rafting trip down the Colorado River someday.

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We stayed in the El Tovar lodge which is the original hotel on the south rim. Its close to 100 years old. Very western and ‘lodge-like!’ After a day of hiking we sat by the fireplace in the lobby. A great vacation!

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