Monday, May 12, 2008

Another successful hike!

Saturday was our first go at leading a "Second Saturday" hike through the Old Forest. Don Richardson, who recently stepped down from the board of Park Friends Inc., has faithfully led these hikes for the past five years or more. CPOP is leading these hikes while Don enjoys his summer vacation.

We had good weather and a really great group -- about 30 people, including a nice assortment of small fry. Our numbers seemed to grow at every turn as people caught up with us. I was glad to see Sierra Clubbers, a few of my Lea's Woods neighbors, and a handful of Rock-n-Rompers. Naomi led the group and I stayed in the back to make sure we didn't lose anybody. As a result, I got to hang with the newbies.

My neighbors, who brought their five-year-old son and seven-year-old daughter, marveled at how much fun their kids were having and couldn't believe they had never come on a hike before. I made sure to point out that with every hike there is something new to see. Seasons change, storms come and go, etc.

The Rock-n-Rompers brought their two-year-old, who wanted to be carried more than his pregnant mom could manage, but they too were impressed by how much fun the hike was. It brought back memories of when my monkeys were too little to walk the whole trail. (Now they are swinging from the trees and I can hardly keep up.) Anyway, they had planned to go camping but changed their minds due to the threat of bad weather. The hike offered them the outdoor experience they were craving without the long drive and worry over tornadoes. Their two-year-old was super excited to hide inside an old hollowed out oak and pet a real, live box turtle.

Naomi said she would have missed the box turtle if not for a very observant young man named Bob. We love having kids on our hikes because they notice details that adults tend to miss. It's not just because their legs are closer to the ground; it's because they are fresh and new, so their world is too.

We're having so much fun on these hikes, we've decided to add another to our schedule this month. Mark your calendars for May 31, 10:00-11:30am!