Thoughts on Hiking in the Black Hills

Well, he did it. Hubby got me out in the woods hiking. Back in the days when I worked as an archaeological technician, I used to hike in the woods, up and down hills, through thickets, over rocks, down draws, and all over the place. I was paid to do it. Now I have to do it because it’s good for me. Or so Hubby says. He’s gives me my daily dose of you-should-hike-more-to-live-longer. I don’t mind the walking. It’s the uphills that get to me!
In general, I’m a clumsy oaf so walking cross-country is hard work. I brought my walking sticks but can I remember to take them along? Of course not. When I do remember to take them along, I can’t carry the pretty rocks I find so Hubby has to carry them. I guess that’s the price he has to pay when he takes me on these forced marches. So far, I have several pieces of rose quartz to add to my rock garden at home.
In the central Hills, the soil is so pretty. It’s like glitter, sparkling in the sunlight. Welcome to the Land of Mica! The mineral is mined here for use in makeup, toothpaste, and other common glittery household products. Back in my forest-hiking days, we came upon a wonderland of piles and piles of finely ground mica. The sparkling dunes of glittering dust beckoned us to roll in it and cover ourselves with fairy dust. What fun that was!! We glittered for several days afterwards.
The central Black Hills are also a fun place to hike in the granite spires and fans. The fans turn the hills into a maze-like setting where it’s easy to get lost or forget which path you took. Like lying in the grass and looking at the clouds, you can see figures in the rocks that turn it into a magical place. We found a little waterfall that rolls down the granite face of a cliff and falls into a pool at the base. The water was so clear! It was deep in a gully filled with spruce trees and shadows and mystery. What a lovely setting for a forest sprite.
Hubby and I went hiking in the rocks looking for the elusive Poets Table. We resorted to instructions from the web. Turn left at the leaning birch tree and go to the right of the rock face. Go as high as you can and turn left. Surprisingly, the directions made sense when we got there. It was a tough climb through the granite fins and up and over rocks and trees and along bluffs. But we found it! Hidden in an alcove of granite sits a green wooden table with four wooden chairs and a wooden cabinet behind it. The cabinet is stuffed with pens, pencils, markers, notebooks, poetry books, and a myriad of other literary things. We pulled out a notebook and left our messages for others to read. I even wrote a poem for the occasion:
I may be fat,
I may be slow,
But given enough time,
I’ll get where I go.
As much as I hate to admit it to Hubby, I enjoyed the forced marches and seeing the wonders of nature up close. The beauty of Creation is inspiring and awesome. Even the prickly wild raspberries bushes, buzzing bees, annoying mosquitos, and ever-present poison ivy didn’t get to me. So if this indoor-enthusiast can enjoy an occasional hike in the woods, I guess anyone can.

One Comment
  1. Good day! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I truly enjoy reading your blog posts. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics? Thanks for your time!

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