Why Des Moines?

It may seem strange to include Des Moines on our hiking trip, but we need to stop and see family. It occurred to me this afternoon as Kenobi and I were a featured buffet for more mosquitoes  than I’d ever want to see agauin, that we’ve been on the road for two weeks now. Things are going to speed up here for a while so we can cover more ground, see more landmarks/monuments, and hike new trails. I’mtrying to keep the drives down into 4 to 5 hours as well as I can.

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Tomorrow we’re stopping by Omaha for some hiking and possible fishing. This stay will only be one night. Then, we’ll drive to Valentine to see the falls and hope to do more fishing. My license is good for three days. Things will slow down once we get into South Dakota. This is one of my main destinations, particularly Black Hills National Forsst.

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Today, Kenobi and I went for a short hike in Maple Woods State Park. It was shortened even more as we were constantly bombarded by mosquittos like I’ve never seen before. Poor little guy got the worst of it as he wants to lie in the mud when he gets hot.

I imagine the trails are very pleasant without the excess moisture and bugs. It starts along the river–a cool, shady trail of large trees. The map boasted that it is the largest area of Black Maple Trees. There are no bikes allowed, which I like. Trails are equestran friendly as well as pet friendly. Leashes are required, as usual. Fishing is allowed, too. There are picnic areas, bathrooms, and a day lodge. Some camping areas are there. Today we rushed through the shortest bit of trail and raced back to the car to hide from blood suckers and bask in a/c.

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