Monday, September 21, 2015

Trail hiking









The past 3 weekends I have hiked through local trails in the Greater Cincinnati area.  I do it for exercise, to learn more about nature and to practice my photography. I carry my camera and my large lens with me on the walks. Cincinnati has some lovely parks and trails. The trails walked in the past 3 weekends are all ones I have walked before.

My first trail hike was at California Woods Nature Preserve.  I walked the Trillium Trail.  It has a high elevation which might have been a mistake for my first walk.  Next time I probably will walk their other trail which I think isn't so strenuous. California Woods is on the eastern side of town on Kellogg Ave near Riverbend. It is a Cincinnati Park. Cincinnati Park's trails are rough as far as trail markers and paths. Sometimes I really enjoy those kinds of trails.  They seem so isolated and beautiful. Read more about the park on the Cincinnati Parks website. It isn't the best website so I'm not sure how long of a hike this was.  I think around a mile or so but since most of it was up a hill it felt like it was longer. Dogs are not allowed in this park. After the Trillium trail I walked by the creek.











The next hike was in Winton Woods,  Winton Woods is a Hamilton County park near Mt Healthy and Greenhills.  Hamilton County parks are wonderful. They are organized, the trails are well marked and either gravel or paved.   I walked with a friend through the Kingfisher Trail.  The Kingfisher trail was a trail that I walked many times as a kid.  I remember it used to cross a creek.  Now it just goes beside the creek but it is still a nice walk.  It is 1.1 mile long  Afterward we still wanted to walk so we walked the West Branch trail which is a paved trail along the lake and is .9 miles. Read more about the park on the Hamilton County Park's website








After hiking at Winton Woods I was heading home and decided to stop in at Spring Grove Cemetery.  Spring Grove is not just a cemetery but an arboretum. On my other walks the only animals I have seen have been squirrels and birds.  My best find at Spring Grove was a fox.  I still go back to the area I saw it and have hopes of seeing one again.  If you go by section 100 there is a small parking pad.  Go to the small clearing by the parking spots a trail begins and heads through a wooded area.  This trail is isolated which is strange to see in a cemetery.  It really isn't a very large area or long trail  The trees are huge which makes it seem far away from the rest of the cemetery. I didn't see a fox this time but did see a deer.  I didn't manage to get a good photo of it.  In the cemetery I saw a couple of turkey vultures flying over.  I'm not much of a bird photographer but I did point my camera upward and got a couple of nice shots.









This past weekend I headed to Shawnee Lookout.  This is another Hamilton County Park.  It is off of Route 50 almost to the Indiana border.  I hiked the Little Turtle trail first.  I love this trail.  It is 2 miles long and takes you up hills to an overlook of the Ohio River.  I saw a few birds on the trail and saw a chipmunk.  There also were lots of dogs.  I saw a dachshund, cocker spaniel, a brown mutt and a handsome young doberman with natural ears.  After finishing the hike I went on another.  The Blue Jacket rail is 1.3 miles and goes through meadows not up hills.  It was a perfect combination of hikes for the day.

















Eventually I would like to add trail information like Colleen Greene does on her hiking blog.  Reading other blogs are great for inspiration and ideas.  I want to learn and improve this blog (and others that I want to start) through practice.