Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Happy Trails: Perry Nature Area + Mary Jo Wegner Arboretum

This morning we hiked at Beaver Creek for a couple of hours, then after a break for ice cold sodas and energy bars (hiking tradition) we headed to the Perry Nature Area for a quick trip.  We left three hours later. 

It started while we were crossing the creek. 

I heard a shriek, "TADPOLES!  SOME HAVE LEGS!"  Then it was me saying no problem, you can walk in the creek to catch a few; we can throw our shoes right in the washer when we get home.  Look out for leeches, kids.  Then it was more fishes, frogs, crayfish...eventually I abandoned all hope of a quick Target run afterward and let them get as filthy as they wanted. 

Naturally, this was the best choice.  It was fantastic.

They had the hardest time catching tadpoles and fish, clumsily splashing with their hands- and their water bottles didn't prove all that useful either.  After about an hour of fun (but no catch, like so many clumsy bears) I said out loud to the kids, "What would Bear Grylls do?"  We searched through our packs, found some empty trash bags and used them as "nets."  Worked like a charm.  Of course this was strictly catch and release.  If Bear Grylls had been there, we'd have eaten them raw right there on the creek bed for the protein of course.

Not long afterward we found this guy.

So this is the point where we get this right out in the open:  I let my kids spend the afternoon trudging through a muddy creek in full street attire with two dogs until they were absolutely resonant with stink.  They spent a sound hour playing with a snapping turtle (harmless I promise.)  Also one of us who shall remain anonymous may have taken a time out to find a bathroom behind some trees.  It was not me, it was not Hudson.  It was no big deal to her, she's done it before.  It happens, OK? 

Essentially, we're hillbillies.

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