Bunny here at the keyboard writing about our recent weekend adventure.
I have always been an adventurous little hound, and I’ve been lucky to see a lot of places with my favorite human. She and I have traveled to Dewey Beach in Delaware to see the Atlantic Ocean, to Chicago to ride on a boat around Navy Pier and through the canals of the city, to Saint Louis to see the Arch and the AKC Museum of the Dog, all along the famous Route 66, and to Nashville to attend BlogPaws and sight see. We’ve gone all over Illinois and I can boast that I’ve seen all of the Seven Wonders of Illinois. I even hiked fifteen miles one day in November with a bunch of German Shepherds who all got tired way before I did. I’ve hiked in all kinds of places and weather and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.
This weekend, however, I found myself on a hike and a half. When my favorite human wants to go on an adventure, I’m always game for the challenge, but this time, the challenge was pretty tough. You see, we haven’t been hiking in quite a while and my human and I are not in hiking shape. It was in one of our favorite local hiking spots, though, and it’s not difficult hiking.
The first obstacle we encountered was mosquitoes.
Let me tell you, those suckers were out for blood. I’m glad that my human always carries bug spray in her backpack and that it’s that serious stuff with the deet in it. She sprayed in on her and she put some on me, because I’m so sweet the bugs can’t resist me. It was worth getting rinsed off at home to keep those itchy pests at bay. We walked through storms of them and none of us got a single bug bite. I’m glad she was prepared for those little devils so we could enjoy our hike. She forgot the bandannas at home, but she promised to keep some in her backpack for the next time.
Farmdale Park has a lot of trails that are shared by hikers, bicyclists and horses. One problem is that the horse traffic near the creeks had made some deep ruts that were a bit treacherous for everyone. Fortunately, they are grooming the trails and making them flat and smooth again. We enjoyed hiking a lot more thanks to that little bit of improvement and we hope they’ll be able to maintain it.
One thing that I don’t like is noise from speakers and PA systems. Imagine my surprise when we started hearing music from a PA at a party that was happening a couple of miles away at a nearby club. Nobody minded it besides me, and it was pretty far away so it wasn’t too bad. My human noticed that I started walking faster after the music was behind us, instead of in front of us, though. It was a mild annoyance, but fortunately it ended during our trip back.
My humans were on a quest to hike three and a half miles.
We made just over three. They were trying to get a special activity achievement for walking that far in one day, and it didn’t seem like it should be that hard to do. We crossed the creek three times and that was just right to keep us nice and cool. On the way back, there were some gunshots from miles away and I didn’t like it. I told my favorite human to get the lead out and I moved from being the hound in the rear to the lead dog for the trek home.
I am proud to say that I made the entire hike without anyone having to carry me. My human got pretty winded there near the end and I felt a little bad for making her walk so fast on the way back, but she said it was alright. Flattery and Dad were fine the entire way. Flattery has come a long way from the days when Dad had to carry her up and down the steps when we were on her first hikes.
After we got home, though, I’m not going to lie. I really felt those miles. It’s been a long time since we hiked and my human has promised that in the future, things will be shorter and easier for me. I am tough and I would take any trail she went on, but I can’t say that I’ll complain about some easier stuff when the weather cools off this autumn and we can really get out and enjoy the trails. I’ve been getting the royal treatment since the hike, though, since I got pretty stiff afterwards and I’m not complaining about that at all.
I am glad that my favorite human still takes me along for adventures and that we do fun things together. I’ll be dreaming about this hike all week while she’s back at work. We saw birds, frogs, little fish, deer and rabbits out on the trail, along with a host of beautiful wildflowers and prairie grass. It was nice to get back to nature and have time together. Now I’m off to continue my well earned nap.