Day 3 – All Trails Challenge

We had some great friends want to go for a hike with us so we knocked out another few miles on the all trails challenge.  Shawn, his fiance Dianne, and his daughter Hailey (she is featured below holding the salamanders).  It was actually very nice to go for a walk in the rain again.  We have had a fairly cold and cloudy July and that has been nice for the guy that is not a big fan of 80+ degree weather.  I prefer those 70 degree days.

The 5 of us met up at Lower MacLeay park and headed up the trail to the Audubon Society [].  They have a nice bird hospital there where you can take injured birds to be rehabbed.  They also have a great learning center and some very nice trails.  If you go while they are open you can see several birds they have that cannot be released as they are too acclimated to humans.  Often they will have them out on display.

Lower MacLeay park is probably my most visited area in all of Forest Park as we just work down the street and it is a nice lunchtime escape.  I also spent two cold rainy days searching for one of the Cross Crusade Grail pieces in that park several years ago.  It was great fun but believe me I have looked behind every bush, structure, stream log, tree in a half mile radius.  I never found it.

The hike is great as it is a well defined trail that follows Balch creek up the hill to an old stone structure that was from an original settlement.  Known as the Stone House (Picture below with Jessie looking at some recent storm damage) it is a popular place to rest on the trail or for high school kids to smoke.  It is also where the Lower MacLeary trail officially ends and the Wildwood trail continues up the hill to the right.  We stopped for a few moments to explore and then headed up the hill.

Once we got to the Audubon Society we found it closed but we could still wander around on the trails.  As a change up we got a nice picture of a snail, Hailey with the salamander, some wild berries, AND the ever present Forest Park trail slug.  This time on the tree.

According to our iPhone mileage it was 4.33 miles.  When I added up from the map with some guestamation for the Audubon trails (based on their map) I get more like 5.02 miles.


Day 3 – about 2 hours and 5’ish miles.  BUT we are not sure if the Audubon trails count as part of the All Trails Challenge

Total – 11.79 of 80 miles completed so about 14% done. BUT we had to backtrack down the trail we went up so that % is wrong.

Total Dog Count: 15 (still, no new dogs on this hike)

Total Time: 4 Hours 47 Minutes

Thanks to Shawn, Dianne, and Hailey for a nice evening stroll.

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