Thursday, March 16, 2017

03-16-2017 St. Louis and Aurora Canyon

Ice in St. Louis Canyon

Today's Walker's Club left the Lodge's lobby and headed for St. Louis Canyon.  Some came directly back to the Lodge, and some chose to walk through the picnic area and going into Aurora Canyon before ending the hike at the Lodge.  43 hikers today. Trails were still snowy and icy.

Joe was quizzing the group on the Illinois symbols.  Nancy had a flat Stanley that made his way through the park today.

The boardwalk going out on the West Bluff trail was icier than I had anticipated.

The last half of the group coming down the stairs by "the orange rock"

The frozen stream formations on the way into St. Louis Canyon

Not a full ice fall, But more than I thought there would be.

We didn't stay long on this break, it was a bit chilly today.

Frozen seepage coming from the base of St. Louis Canyon

St. Louis Canyon icicles

Group leaving St. Louis Canyon

Cool ice formations on the creek coming out of St. Louis Canyon

A slippery narrow board is the way to get over the partially frozen stream.

I was in the group that went over the entrance road and through the picnic area.

The old road (now trail), soon to be the new road to the new bridge. They are clearing the trees out now.

Coming through the picnic area, love the Canadian Geese on the bathroom roof

Found this Skunk Cabbage flower (it is in the center and is maroonish in color)

A Couple of Skunk Cabbage flowers with the beginnings of a leaf

Donna Coleman in Aurora Canyon

Climbing out of Aurora Canyon

One last photo of Aurora Canyon

This is the only place in the park that I have fell off the trail.  (not today, but I came close)

Lots of snow and ice still on the trails.
I will leave you with this: A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Feb. 23, 2017 Starved Rock, Wildcat, Pontiac and French Canyon

Today there was 50 hikers out to enjoy this beautiful day!  We left the lobby at 9:00a.m and headed to the top of Starved Rock.  On to French Canyon, Pontiac Canyon, Wildcat Canyon, Eagles Cliff and Lover's Leap. 

Enjoying Wildcat Canyon with friends

Going down the back steps of the Lodge

Everyone heading up to the top of Starved Rock

Almost there folks, just a few more steps.

Beautiful view looking to the East from the top of Starved Rock

Ron giving his rendition of the Legend of Starved Rock

View of the Lodge from the Starved Rock

Solar panel at the top of Starved Rock

We saw this juvenile bald eagle when we were leaving the top of Starved Rock.  It was in the "Cove area" between Starved Rock and Lover's Leap

On to French Canyon,

French Canyon!  Looking Good!

Coming out of French Canyon

Some trash is just too far off the trail to retrieve safely

So many trails and directions.  Let's go to Pontiac Canyon next.

Pontiac Canyon from the Bluff trail

Top of Wildcat Canyon, from the bluff trail

Whats left of the ice.  Not much!  Probably will be gone by the end of the day.

Wildcat Canyon Waterfall.  Nice to come here without people climbing all over the place.

We always like Wildcat Canyon in the early Spring

Some places we just don't go, and neither should anyone else.

View of Eagles Cliff from the River Trail

Moss and Ferns along the river trail.  Getting Green!!

Eagles Cliff Overlook

Best View in the park.  Looking East at the top of Eagles Cliff

Its been so warm this past week that some of the shrubs and trees have buds.

Really getting green

Fisherman at the base of Starved Rock.  Getting ready for the upcoming tournaments.  Lot of boats out today.

Top of Starved Rock from Lover's Leap. Note the boat in the lower right corner.

This pink jacket has been working its way down the cliff.  It has been littered here now for about 3 years.

Thought for the day in the Cafe
I will leave you with this: The eye never forgets what the heart has seen.