While in Montana, Kari took us to a favorite trailhead near her house for a "little hike." And by "little hike" I mean a 6 mile long adventure. This worked out well though, because as you know, I'm doing a running event with a friend every month this year, and I really wanted to do something with Kari while I visited her in July. Tiny Martinsdale doesn't have any 5K events (shocking!) so I knew we'd have to come up with our own thing. Turns out we did a 10K "trail run" and we brought along our families! I still can't believe every single one of the kids completed the long hike with nary a complaint and in good time.
Kari found a gooseberry bush along the trail and handed out samples to everyone. She also found wild strawberries which the kids loved!
See the rocks in the distance? That was our destination. We had already been walking a long time when I took this photo and heard it was where we were headed. I felt a momentary sense of panic.
There were tons of wildflowers on the mountain. It really was a beautiful hike. Kari and I are wearing the "event shirts" I created on customizedgirl.com. (They have an easy to use interactive site and great prices!)
We finally made it to the canyon and caves. Rumor has it there are old Indian paintings on some of the cave walls. The water here is freezing cold. I was praying no one would tumble over and get soaked because we would have had to listen to them whine the entire hike back. We hung out here for a little while, but a dark cloud came up suddenly. We didn't want to be stuck on the mountain during a storm so we started the journey back.
After we got away from the canyon, the weather lightened up a bit so we took our time and got a few pictures.
We had fun spotting and identifying animal tracks along the way. We saw all kinds of tracks which Kari would dutifully identify immediately. But then I spotted an unusual one. I called her over and she and I marveled about what it could be as she exclaimed she had never seen anything like it before. I was starting to think we had really found something amazing until Cody started laughing at us both.
Turns out he knew what had caused that track.
After the hike we were all exhausted. And it was way past lunch time. Thankfully we had brought picnic supplies, so we plopped down at this convenient table to eat and rest.
Cody and I agree that this hike was one of the highlights of our entire trip. It was a fun, beautiful way to spend several hours and we sure felt a sense of accomplishment after it.