Cuivre River pre-hike April 27, 2013

Since I will be going on the Hammock Forums Ozark Trail #5 Hang next weekend I thought I should get out with a pack and walk a bit before hitting Taum Sauk cold. I haven't really been out with a pack since the Smokies in February.
It was a rainy day, but very nice temperatures I got out on the trail at 8 am for about 7-8 miles. I was carrying about 12 lbs with water.

The Bluebells were out in full force along the trail today

Everything was very green and wet.

 The Cuivre River trail is marked with a red blaze
 I like going on the Cuivre River trail, as it goes by and old town and the ridge vista, but it is open to horses and can be ( and was) very muddy

 Lots more wildflowers and bluebells along the trail

 the bluff has a great view of the valley and the trail travels along the edge for about 1 mile
 This is what horses can do to a trail!

Panorama of the bluff view (above) and the woods (below)

Cuivre River Trail - 8 miles- 3 hrs
Animals Scene:
Deer ( about dozen big white tail)
Turkey Vultures ( a whole tree full of them)
1 horse with rider
2 morel hunters

R.V. weekend with Graham Cave State Park April 19-21, 2013

We thought we would get away for just a few days close by and make sure the RV was ready for the season- we are still thinking about getting something different. We went just 40 miles west to Kan-Do Campground which is only one mile from Graham Cave State Park.

Driving along on the highway to Kan-Do campground
on Saturday we decided to walk down to Graham Cave State Park.
If you look closely on the left side of the road you will see the last of the white tail deer that bounded in front of us while walking
Graham Cave is the first protected archeological site in Missouri.

 Spring wildflowers were just getting started along the trail to the cave

Trail work steps to start the trail to Graham Cave in the park 
Graham Cave 
A little horsing around and warrior pose above Graham Cave
nice waterfall below Graham Cave
Campfire at the RV park in the evenings keeping everything nice and warm

Kan-Do Campground - Exit 170 off Hwy 70
Graham Cave State Park 

Hammock Forums Perry Lake Kansas Hang April 5-7 2013

The Hammock Forums Kansas Hang was held at Perry Lake Wilderness Area just north of Lawrence Kansas. There were seven of attending, 6 coming in on Friday and 1 arriving Saturday. the weather forecast was for good weather, quite warm, with showers on Sunday morning

 There is a series of colored trails in the area totaling about 27 miles of trails. This was planned for an easy overnight 1.5 miles the first day, 1.5 miles the second and then the 3 miles back out on Sunday. There were some first time campers/hikers with us this trip

 I arrived about 6 pm at the campsite having caught an earlier flight back to St.Louis and then driven the 4 hours to the hang site. the first night was relaxing, seeing friends I knew and getting to know the new members
 the temperatures were good the first night- high 40's, low 50's and calm. a nice fire before bed was fun to sit around and chat.

a view from my hammock in the morning

wondering in the woods the next morning I came across a full beaver
skeleton and various other items like this snail shell and turkey feathers

the "Gang"

Raman Shamen, Hoot, 1066Vik,


The trail was hyper marked- it seemed every 50 feet their was a blaze
on the trees- if you look closely you can see 3 blazes in this photo
the lake was very low and receded back to show a prairie of grass
well we made it the second 1.5 miles, but a member of our group
was not feeling well and doubted that he could make it back the 3 miles
if the weather turned foul the next day, so Ramen Shamen and I walked
the 3 miles back to the parking lot, got our cars and swung around
the roads to pick them up and bring them back to the original parking lot
where it was only a 1/4 mile to the first established pavilion in the park.

 The area managers had been kind enough to turn the water on for us, as
Ramen Shamen had called to let them know we would be hiking in the area
 that weekend.

Radiohead and 1066vik
Once we arrived and everyone was settled it was time for some lunch and rest

I took advantage of the pavilion and set up my hammock under the roof

The day turned out to be quite nice

 The evening brought out the fire makers and we had a roaring one in no time.
there is always someone in the group that brings SPAM- yuck!

 The evening was very nice and the sunset over the lake was beautiful
The morning dawned with brilliant colors and many animal sounds in
the campground 
Turkey, woodpecker and owl, were all awake at dawn and
making their presence known.
it was a very relaxing and restful day to spend laughing and chatting.
I had not anticipated the very warm weather (85 on Saturday) and that the
bugs would be out so soon. I came home as one big chigger bite. In addition
the ticks where everywhere fortunately I only found one hitchhiker later.
Thanks to Owl and Ramen Shamen for organizing!

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