Thursday, January 31, 2019

Ottawa, Kaskaskia and Illinois Canyons 01-31-2019

Coming to work today and my car told me it was -21 degrees outside.  I didn't think there would be many hardy hikers today.  There were 6 counting myself.  3 guys and 3 gals.  Saw lots of cool things.  Trails were snow covered and all the streams were frozen.  Great hike!  If your going to hike in this cold, go prepared. Wool is wonderful.  Wool socks and mittens, scarf, down coat, insulated pants, hat that covers your ears. And definitely wear extra traction on your boots. 

Guess who? This is Ron

From the left: Glen, Peggy, Terry, Jan and Ron. We are ready to go!

The "BOOT"

On our way to Council Overhang

The path going into Ottawa Canyon.  You can see the waterfall in the background

Crunchy ice trails. Wear your Yak-trax or Katoohlas

Bonus Waterfall in Ottawa Canyon

Behind Ottawa Canyon

Ice formation up close on the main icefall of Ottawa Canyon

It is amazing to be able to walk all around the icefall.  Still Ottawa Canyon

Looking out of Ottawa Canyon

I love this photo of Ottawa Canyon.  From the photo, everyone else does also

Here and there are holes in the ice to the flowing creek

Kaskaskia Canyon

These little ice flower icicles were hanging everywhere. LOVE IT!  Hard to photograph

Behind Kaskaskia icefall. Incredible!

More ice flowers

Council Overhang from the lower trail

Wedding Cove - this is right off of the Ottawa Canyon parking lot

Peggy and all her frost.

Once we hiked Ottawa/Kaskaskia Canyon, I moved my car to hike Illinois Canyon.  Everyone else walked the "Swamp" trail. 

Bonus ice fall going into Illinois Canyon

This little guy didn't want to go into the canyon.  He did tell us to say hi to his friend who moved on to see the icefall.

Crossing the first stream.  All streams were frozen today.

Crossing number 2, frozen

Crossing number 3, frozen

Another bonus frozen waterfall in Illinois Canyon

Going up to the Illinois Canyon Icefall

We walked back on the frozen stream.  You can't get very far, but it certainly is a treat!

Illinois Canyon.  This is as far as you can go. 

He didn't want to join his friend that we seen earlier. He loves Illinois Canyon

Time for a snow angel!

Yes I am 57 years old and still love doing snow angels. 

Here is my snow angel.  It is what it is.  Hard to see!

Bonus ice fall coming out of Illinois Canyon
I will leave you with this: To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake, it is necessary to stand out in the cold.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Hennepin, Hidden, Owl Canyon

What a great day to hike!  About 30 degrees.  Not much ice on the trails. Some people wore yak-trax.  I brought mine but didn't put them on.   Today's hike we met in the Lodge's Lobby and carpooled to the Hennepin Canyon parking lot on Rt. 71 East of the Lodge.  

All 43 of us walking single file to cross the road and onto the main trail

Beyond the trees is the Illinois River

View from Hennepin Canyon Overlook

Trail conditions: Snowy with ice underneath

Looking at the West wall of Hennepin Canyon

A little fungi on the way

From the Hennepin Canyon Bridge looking South

Looking into Hennepin Canyon from the bridge

Looking back at the semi frozen Hennepin Frozen Ice fall

Hidden Canyon, its hidden, so we think this is Hidden Canyon

The ice was a little crunchy.  Not to bad to walk on.

We got to the top of Owl Canyon and some opted to hike back to the Lodge (10pp)  The rest turned around and went back to the cars. I rode with a friend, so I went back to the car. 

I was near the end on the way back

This snow melting on the rail by the closed Owl Canyon Overlook.  How does this happen?  Draped for winter. 

You have to be somewhat in shape to do these stairs (roots) in the winter.

Always trying to get a better photo of Hennepin Canyon

This boardwalk needs a little help.  Be careful here. This is on the trail a  little West of the Hennepin Canyon Overlook

This little sapling looks deadly. I think its some kind of a locust tree. 
I will leave you with this: Love yourself for all you have been, all you are, and all you will become!