Friday, November 28, 2014

Hiking Lone Elk

 We headed out today, not to participate in Black Friday, but to get some fresh air and exercise.  We chose the Lone Elk side of the Chubb trail.  Rex, Eli, myself, and the Beautiful Mrs K.
 At the bottom of the hill from the Lone Elk entrance, we took the cut off under the railroad tracks to do the Castlewood Loop.
 The tunnel is so freaking cool.  I rode through this on my bike the other day when the trail was dry.  Riding a bike today on the trail would have been a mud bath.  Not so bad hiking, though.
 This tricky little creek crossing befuddled Rex.  It was slick as greased moose poop.
 Rex, fixin' to mark the Castlewood Loop post.
 A view across the Meramec River, looking at the Bluffs in Castlewood State Park.  We could see people milling about on the bluffs.
 Another view.  Upper left is the overlooks at the top of Lone Wolf trail.
 A neat view of the cool houses on top of the bluffs above the Meramec River.
 Mrs K caught Eli and I taking in the view.
Rex and I inside the hollow of the big tree at the entrance to the Castlewood Loop.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Rosco and Rex

 My boy had a handsome face.  This was just a few days before he passed away.
 Rex was sleeping, but Rosco was ever-tense when he was lying next to Rex.  He just didn't trust the floppy new puppy.
Something has Rex's full attention!  Obviously excited to go for a walk, while Rosco was trying to find an path to anywhere that wasn't next to Rex.  They were only together for five weeks, and by the end of that time Rosco could walk under Rex.

Rosco - Big Yawn

It's nice to come up with old photos of my little pal.  Deanna had this on her phone.  Look how fuzzy he would get when we wouldn't get his hair cut!

Friday, November 07, 2014

Night Ride on the Katy Trail with a Rowdy Bunch

 I never do things like that.  I mean, I never ride my bike just for silly fun.  I'm always riding hard or burning calories...never doing things like riding the Katy Trail at night.  When DJ proposed that we do just that (ride the Katy Trail from Research Park to Defiance and back after work one night), I pretty much knew that I wouldn't go.  I never do things like that.  But I went.  DJ, Jen, Hartbeck, Jer-bear and I met at the trail head at Research Park with the full moon shining.  And it was cold!  Once we hit the trail, the moon was so bright that we all turned off our lights.  It was such an amazing sight.  And we had a blast, too.  Skunks were out in force, and we saw 10-12 of them and I swear Hartbeck was going to get sprayed.  Frozen, we reached Defiance.  The bar we wanted to stop at to warm up and have a pint was closed...so we walked into the OTHER bar.  To say it was sparsely populated is an understatement.  But it was warm and there were refreshments there.
We had refreshments.  And there was a great surfboard above our heads.  And someone told Jer-bear that he looked like an Angry Bird.  Much warmer, we chased more skunks on the way home, and Jenn put the hammer down and pushed the pace to the point that some of us had to stop and pee.  There may have been riders off the trail at one point too, but I'm not sure.  All in all, an unforgettable night.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Sherman Beach, Al Foster, Rock Hollow Trail

 Having ridden the day before at Greensfelder, I needed a more mild adventure last week.  I decided to start at the Sherman Beach trail head and spin down to see the new Rock Hollow trail.
 Riding along the Al Foster trail, I was reminded how cool the area was.  This was a familiar sight: the trestle for the little rail road.  We took the kids there before:  HERE
 I found the Rock Hollow.  A nice little sign alerted me to the mountain bike goodness ahead.
 It's a lot of fun.  Lots of bench-cut trail, outlined in many places by rock walls such as this.  Lots of leaves on the trail meant that I had to watch what I was doing.  It pretty much climbed gradually from the start all the way to -
 - this sign.  Of course, I went a few feet further and it looks like it's going to be awesome with a capital A.  Coming down was very cool, too.  Again, I had to be less than awesome myself to avoid splatting myself because of the leaves.
 Further down the Al Foster, more bluffs.  Somehow, I missed the Bluff View trail, which was part of the reason I rode that day.  Hmmmm....don't know what I was thinking.
 I did reach the end of the Al Foster, which I had never done. 
 I spied a little production crew filming some 18th century movie scene.  If you zoom in on the photo, you can see the actor's top hat and the actress's poofy dress.
 I stopped in at the Wabash rail road.  It was deserted, being a weekday in the fall.
 I was bummed that there were no trains in sight.  I am impressed at how well they maintain this little place.  Super cool.  If you have some little ones, take them there some day.
Before I loaded up the car and the bike, I decided to actually see Sherman Beach.  I have seen old photographs from the early 20th century when Castlewood and Sherman Beach were the places to go to party it up in the summer time.  The beach is actually quite large and could probably accommodate a couple hundred people.  I rode down it a ways until it disappeared into the hillside.

Next time I come out, I'll ride the Bluff View.