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After our trip to July Creek, the kids have been pretty excited to get back out and explore more trails.

Actually. They really just wanted to revisit July Creek and play in the water again. I convinced them we could find another really awesome hike if they trusted me. After a quick lunch, we set out to get ready for another sunny spring day.

Sunny. Yes. We left our house and it was 65 degrees and sunny. Nola insisted she needed her raincoat. And galoshes. And sunglasses. Funny enough, as soon as we parked in the RAINforest, it began to drizzle. I could see the twinkle in her eye when I conceded she had dressed appropriately. She said “See? The fairies are always right.” I’m not exactly sure what that means, but I had no ground to argue!

At least one of us was prepared.

Linus on the other hand would not leave the house unless he was able to wear his sister’s sun hat. We are a stylish troup!

As soon as we entered the tree cover, I was really amazed by how little rain made it down to us. Spring has really been good to the forest and every tree has brand new leaves. I wish I was good at remembering my botany, but aside from ferns and random flowers, it’s all just greenery to me. Lush, iridescent, incredible greenery.
With a side of mushrooms. I know there are foragers out there who rummage through these woods and return home with spoils of wonderful edibles. Mushrooms always remind me of the movie The BearUntil further notice, any mushrooms discovered outside of the farmer’s market or shelf at the grocery are considered poisonous.A few minutes through our hike, the sun broke back through the gray. The speckles of yellow through the trees spotlighted interesting flowers and promising buds. I’m sure there is something new to look at ever other day on this trail.

We made it to the bridge over Willaby Creek, ate some bananas and turned back towards the car. I was impressed with Nola’s hiking. Linus stayed in the backpack through “tunnels” where the trees grew closer together and blocked the sun, but he was happy to wiggle free and eat snacks when we stopped in clearings.The trail was fairly level. It only became slightly difficult for a 4 year old right before the bridge, but she made it through with only a little hand. I think both kids were disappointed there was no clear access point to the water. They could see and hear the creek for most of the hike, but were never able to toss stones into it’s depths. I’ll have to factor in a water feature next time for sure. I had to get creative in order to keep their mind away from tromping off the path down to the crystal blue stream.

So I looked for bugs

And explained all the baby plant-lings along the path would not survive the wrath of their red rain boots. I think only a few blades of grass were injured along our hike. They were sacrificed by Linus for a stick that laid just out of reach.

We made it back to the car with just enough string cheese and juice to make it the 25 minute drive home.

PS: We hiked the loop backwards! Originally I had planned this because we had hiked the beginning of the loop with a friend on a previous visit and I wanted to see the other side. It also helps because it gives you a slight down-hill return. A good 25-30 degree grade is good to keep a sidetracked toddler rolling forward.

Rebel against the arrow!