Friday, March 27, 2020

More hiking...

We returned to Mt. Nebo Thursday to tackle the entire 4 mile Bench Road Trail.  We headed out at 10 a.m. to beat the 80° temperatures that were predicted.  We started at the opposite end of the trail from the other day.  There is a narrow bench that encircles the mountain, hence the name for the trail.

Right from the beginning we encountered trail construction.  It didn't affect the trail we were on that circled the top of Mt. Nebo, but rather many of the mountain bike trails.

About a kilometer in we found the first  campsites.  They were very nice and spacious.  Each had a tent pad, picnic table, and fire ring.  2 of those 3 sites were occupied.  Nearly half way around the trail were 5 more campsites that were further off the path, and then there were camping sites closer to the other end also.  We also had a view of Sunset Point up above.  We visited it by car last time we were here.
Sunset Point at the top
We passed several springs that were used in the 1800's.  Varnall spring supplied water to the town of Dardenelle, and both Dicken's Spring and Carling Spring supplied water to the Summit Park Hotel that use to sit on top of the bluff.
Dicken's Spring
We walked past Fern Lake (looked more like a pond).  It and the various springs were gathering spots for people in the 1800's.  We stopped at a bench overlooking the lake and had our lunch of cheese, crackers, and nuts.  It was very pretty and as we walked to the bench I lost count of the number of frogs jumping into the pond. Back in the 1800's, the hotel patrons would come down and canoe or go paddle boating on the lake.
Cuts in trees around Fern Lake
Lunch at Fern Lake
Krikkit enjoying some cheese

It was interesting to see cuts in the trees around Fern Lake, possibly made with a chain saw.  It looked like all of the trees had 1 and maybe 2 cuts, all about the same height up on the trunk. Assuming this was on purpose, but we don't know.  Anyone have an idea as to why they may have done this???

After lunch it got pretty hot.  It was a record high of 87°.  I had my first woolly worm sighting.  My poor sneaker--I had just washed them and then stepped in a muddy puddle. When we reached the end of the dirt path we had to take the road a short distance to get back to where we started.  Krikkit walked a lot, and all of us were tired.

When we got back to our campground Krikkit got a much needed bath.  Pat fixed my favorite, hot wings, on the grill.  Pat, Krikkit and I couldn't wait for them. No, we didn't give any to Krikki.  When she was 3 or 4 though, we were sitting at the bar top and one slipped out of Pat's fingers.  Pat and Krikkit both dove for it. Krikkit swallowed it whole before Pat got there.  Then she came up wagging and looking for more!  She lived!!
A sign of spring at the campground

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