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Thursday, March 12, 2015

Illinois and Michigan Canal- 03-12-2015


Today's hike met in the Lodge's lobby like every other day.  Today we had 33 walkers and 2 dogs.  The weather was FANTASTIC!!!. Sunny and bright.  Started out a little chilly, but by the end of the walk it was very pleasant.  The Tow Path that we walked on was frozen most of the way going towards split rock (1/2 way)  and towards the end it was starting to get sloppy and muddy.

This chart (located in Utica) tells you the distances along the canal.

There is also a map of the canal there.

We were quite the stream of walkers today.

This sign is pretty early on.  We only walked to Split Rock and back.  All the way to LaSalle is 4.3.


We actually saw many eagles today.  This one let us get pretty close.

We're getting there 1 mile down and 1.2 to go.  Then we have to walk back.
We are at the Pecumsaugan Creek, this is looking to the North

Looking south, Pecumsaugan Creek

Old railroad tunnel through the sandstone

You can see here that the sandstone is tipping to the West.  Some parts in Starved Rock it is tipping to the East.  One of our hikers "Geology Joe"  tells us the story of the Sandstone... why the lines....why is it here.  Interesting.  But as I explain it here it looses something in the translation.  So I will leave the Geology to Joe.

Mile marker.  We just turned around, heading back to Utica

Almost back

We were very spread out today.  Some brought there yak tracks and some just slid around.

Looking over the canal bridge in Utica we saw these formations on the ice.  Some thought they were where someone threw rocks.  I'm not so sure.  Maybe it is an indication that the flowers were soon to come.  Kind of like flower power.  This is what I'm going with.  



Today wasn't a very flashy hike, but it was nice having a larger group.  It gave us time to catch up with some of the hikers we haven't seen in awhile.  Wildlife we saw today was Eagles.  I think I saw a few Pelicans.  I'm sure I did.  Some others on the hike said no that they were just seagulls.  Well Arnie (a fellow hiker) saw a flock of pelicans off the Veranda while having lunch at the Lodge after the walk.  I'm pretty sure the birds I saw were the scouts for the Squadron, pod or scoop. (these 3 are other names for a group of pelicans).

 I will leave you with this: Wherever you may hike or walk, just put one foot in front of the other.  It's all about the experience not the destination.

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