Happy summer hiking, my friends! I still can’t quite wrap my mind around these blue skies and green grass and leafy trees. We’ve been so starved for sunshine that it feels like if I blink it might all vanish. Anyway, after the winter we’ve had, I’m determined to make this the best summer ever, and I think Sprague Brook Park is going to be a big part of that.
This past Saturday – June 6th – was National Trails Day. So when hubby suggested a family hike, I was all about that idea. (Of course, I’m always all about a family hike, but I was particularly enthusiastic about spending National Trails Day, you know, on the trails.) The day was gorgeous – the weather definitely got the National Trails Day memo – and we loaded up the kids and headed to Sprague Brook Park to knock out our June hike (although I’m sure this wasn’t the last time we’ll be hitting the trails this month). Fun fact: we’ve been to Sprague Brook before…
Peanut’s a little bit bigger now. 😉
We visited Sprague Brook in July of 2013, when we came up to Buffalo to look for housing before our big move. I remember loving the small corner of the park that we were able to see at the time, and itching to discover more of it. It’s been quite awhile, but we finally made it back, and it was just as lovely as I remembered.
We headed up the “snowmobile climb” trail and it was one of the more strenuous paths we’ve found around here. Plenty of rolling hills to challenge our poor quads. It felt good to be getting in a bit of a workout while we enjoyed the scenery.
Nugget says “Faster, Mommy! No breaks!”
Peanut says “The backpack AGAIN, Daddy?”
One thing I noticed was that there wasn’t much undergrowth, aside from a few clumps of ferns. I’m not sure how the park achieved that, but I liked it. You could see more, and further, from the trail as a result. Hubby said that the park had a sort of feel to it, like there might be a dinosaur around the corner. I laughed and agreed, and told him that at that very moment I was thinking of the first line of Longfellow’s epic poem Evangeline, which begins “This is the forest primeval.”
There was a large stream or creek running along the trail, and occasionally under it (via a pretty wooden footbridge), but the creek bed was quite dry. We’ve since gotten a few days of hard rain; as you can see, we needed it.
Peanut fell asleep in the backpack, which actually ended up being a good thing: her “chariot nap” interfered with the car nap she was no doubt planning, and we were actually able to keep her on her normal lunch and nap schedule for the afternoon – a miracle!
Nugget, by contrast, did not close his eyes once during the hike. I’m not even sure he blinked. He was too interested in the leafy canopy, the mountain bikers we saw riding over the rolling hills, and the fern clusters.
We had such a marvelous time hiking Sprague Brook. We spent about an hour on the trail and barely scratched the surface. I think we’re going to have to go back sooner rather than later… and this could even be a candidate for a 2016 seasonal hiking project. If you’re in the area, this park is a can’t-miss. I think it’s currently my favorite local park (not counting Letchworth, which is a bit further afield).
Hubby: Merrell Moab waterproof hiking shoes (that’s right! he finally got new ones!); Black Diamond hiking poles; Deuter KidComfort III child carrier.
Me: Oboz Luna hiking shoes; Black Diamond hiking poles; Ergobaby child carrier with newborn insert.
Did you celebrate National Trails Day last weekend?